Blog Archives

Vigil Intensive – enabling positive behavioural change that lasts

31 July 2017

“Highly engaged employees make the customer experience. Disengaged employees break it.” –Timothy R. Clark Customer service is one battleground that can’t be won without a good army by your side – but keeping your team engaged and working towards the… Read more

From touchpoints to journeys: Seeing the world as customers do

26 August 2016

Nicolas Maechler, Kevin Neher, and Robert Park To maximize customer satisfaction, companies have long emphasized touchpoints. But doing so can divert attention from the more important issue: the customer’s end-to-end journey. When most companies focus on customer experience they think about… Read more

UK research proves physical stores still ‘essential’

10 August 2016

Inside Retail NZ Physical stores remain essential to UK retail according to new research from Verdict Retail and real estate firm, British Land. Despite the rapid growth of online shopping in recent years, in 2015, 89 per cent (£278 billion) of… Read more

Why Mystery Shoppers Are More Accurate Than Customer Surveys 

24 March 2016

Jerome   If you want to gather feedback about your business which is more effective – customer surveys or mystery shoppers? Many businesses use customer surveys to gain information about how their companies could improve, but there are several reasons… Read more

Hoed Research Wins Major Lotto NZ Contract

1 March 2016

Hoed Research NZ has been awarded a three-year contract with Lotto NZ to help measure and improve its customer service offering and to track compliance requirements. Lotto NZ is a Crown entity which promotes, organises and conducts lottery games. Through… Read more

Online services most troublesome trade

24 September 2015

According to the Commerce Commission’s in-depth annual Consumer Issues report, some interesting trends were highlighted, including the fact that online services and transactions attract the most complaints from consumers and pose regulatory challenges. Growth in online sales has outpaced growth… Read more

Vigil Immediate for instantaneous feedback on customer sentiment!

5 August 2015

Single cause of company failure comes down to customer experience. Imagine a customer has just left your store. They comment on their experience using a technology of their choice. You get an immediate alert and stop a customer service crisis right in its tracks… Read more

It is as we thought all along!

21 July 2015

It is as we thought all along. Bricks and mortar are far from dead and will play a major role in any future retailing. We quickly forget we are humans first and foremost and can so easily get hung up… Read more

That’s Customer Feedback

15 July 2015

You see a gorgeous girl at a party. You go up to her and say: “I’m very rich. Marry me”. That’s direct marketing. You’re at at party with a bunch of friends and see a gorgeous girl. One of your… Read more

A snapshot of current retail trends – this is great!

15 July 2015

“The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.” – Alan Watts As we start a new financial year, I thought it worthwhile to draw breath and take a snapshot… Read more

Improve over the phone service or pay the price!

10 July 2015

Customers are sometimes at the mercy of the retailer’s suppliers, especially when it comes to issues regarding warranty and service. Therefore, as a customer it is worthwhile to speak directly to the supplier before making a decision to purchase that… Read more

Happy customers!

16 June 2015

Customer comment June 2015 “We are continually impressed with what we have collectively worked towards over the duration of our relationship with HOED NZ. I have to be honest and say you guys really do come to the party with… Read more

Create a sea of raving fans!

11 June 2015

If you want to build a strong, profitable company that people love to buy from, there are no secrets or tricks. What matters most is Customer Service. No matter what your company sells, you’ve got to provide appropriate Customer Service… Read more

Just popping down to my local Amazon shop!

27 May 2015

By Brian Walker Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future. – John F. Kennedy Over the last few years, we at Retail Doctor Group have become… Read more

Business Opportunity!

19 May 2015

We have a subsidiary company called VIGIL, which is a recent start-up using modern day technologies to measure and monitor the customer experience through real-time Alerts, and online dashboards. Further information can be found by visiting the VIGIL website at… Read more

Coming out as a retailer

18 May 2015

by Dennis Price from Ganador Without exception we can attribute success or failure of a retail business to people. Even if we blame an extraneous event, it is not the event as such, but how the people react to the… Read more

Creating the right survey!

1 May 2015

When we strip away the glamor, the surveys we create and administer are nothing more than data collection platforms. Novice researchers may focus on basic question types, but as we expand our skills the more astute researcher realizes there are… Read more

Purchase decision influencers!

1 May 2015

The importance of bricks and mortar!

6 April 2015

We have previously discussed the importance of bricks and mortar relative to online retailing, which is now a well-known trend. Initially there was much ‘angst’ and consternation by retailers concerned that pure play e-tailers would simply erode their business. This… Read more

“You’re missing out.”

17 March 2015

Place multiple Job Adverts for “Free”. HOED has a website that ranks high on Google searches plus thousands of shoppers accessing and submitting data each month, including hundreds of customers viewing online reporting from locations across New Zealand. Consequently viewing… Read more

Turning the tables!

13 March 2015

By Stuart Bennie In 2011, I wrote an article titled, ‘Multi-channel may not win online war’. This drew a sharp response, with more than 50 comments from around the world. According to Barbara Thau from Forbes, “massive store closings will… Read more

Measuring ROI from digital channels!

6 March 2015

DEPARTMENT STORES: Big bets vs big data

2 March 2015

BY ZEENAT MOORAD, FEBRUARY 26 2015 “EXCUSE me, I was looking at that,” a redhead snaps. “No, I saw it first, so it’s mine,” an elfin woman fires back, tightening her grip on a pair of suede pumps. This is… Read more

What are OUR customers saying?

2 March 2015

At HOED we work hard to satisfy our clients, however we also know we aren’t perfect. We value your opinion and would appreciate your feedback which will take less than a minute to complete. To show our appreciation you will… Read more

March special – a first for HOED!

2 March 2015

HOED is offering a 20% discount to existing customers running a mystery shopping survey in the month of March, who would like the option to run a ‘second’ wave or round in the same month. Existing programme pricing prevails for… Read more

Book a post results webinar!

2 March 2015

Receive practical advice and tips To further support and communicate your customer experience survey results, HOED is offering an online Webinar service. Because our survey results are actionable the opportunity exists to encourage positive change within your teams, by coaching… Read more

Customer service pain points still driving consumers away!

28 January 2015

                          Data source: Accenture 28/01/15

Bricks & mortar is here to stay

23 January 2015

Bricks and mortar is here to stay. I realise it’s a big statement but I stand by it. I do have one caveat though, and that is, bricks and mortar is here to stay, but not as we know it…. Read more

The year ahead – 2015!

12 January 2015

What should we expect in terms of how customers purchase and react in 2015? In our view consolidation of new technologies, purchase methods and delivery or collection of goods is well underway, and will continue at speed. New technologies are… Read more

Season’s Greetings from the Team at HOED

19 December 2014

Mystery Shopping SCAM in the USA!

24 November 2014

Further to our home page notification there is a Mystery Shopping scam underway in the USA. The scammers have targeted various Mystery Shopping provider websites for details including our own. There is no impact on our New Zealand and Australian… Read more

NZ Retail sales rise by 1.5% in September quarter!

17 November 2014

    Q3 real retail sales: 1.5% (Westpac f/c: 1.5%, market f/c: 0.8%) Q3 real core sales: 1.4% (Westpac f/c: 1.5%) Annual change: 4.7% (prev: 3.6%) Real retail sales rose 1.5% in the September quarter, in line with our forecast… Read more

Theft costing retailers billions!

12 November 2014

Shoplifting is costing Australian retailers $2.8 billion a year, with employee theft accounting for almost half of the losses, a new report released by Checkpoint Systems has revealed. According to The Smart Cube’s Global Retail Theft Barometer 2013-2014, published by Checkpoint Systems, more… Read more

HOED Webinars to present survey results

7 November 2014

To further support and communicate your customer experience survey results, HOED Mystery Shopping NZ is offering an online Webinar service. Because our survey results are actionable we would like to use the opportunity to encourage positive change within your teams,… Read more

Online offering – how do you rate?

5 November 2014

As a reseller of goods and products it is essential that your ‘online’ offer matches your ‘offline’ capability (bricks and mortar locations). Essentially this means bringing together both your website and store/shop in a unified manner. When a customer is… Read more

HOED ‘exit’ interviews can assist profitability!

5 November 2014

Using our Vigil platform and nationwide network of interviewers (shoppers), we are able to provide a professional, non-intrusive approach to gaining immediate top-of-mind feedback from customers who have just visited a store or retail location, anywhere in NZ. We design… Read more

Consumer and HOED NZ team up!

3 November 2014

HOED Mystery Shopping NZ is delighted to announce a new partnership with Consumer NZ. Consumer has introduced a Consumer Trusted programme which will be rolled out across the country. Hoed NZ will undertake the mystery shopping element of the process,… Read more

ZIERA SHOES NAMED SUPREME TOPSHOP IN ALL OF NEW ZEALAND

29 October 2014

The best shops from around the Upper North Island, and across New Zealand have been named in the Retail NZ TopShop Awards ceremony held in Auckland last night. Ziera Shoes in Broadway Newmarket was named not only the Overall Regional… Read more

Embracing showrooming!

24 October 2014

The following article has been written by Jon Bird (21 October 2014). At VIGIL and HOED we predicted showrooming would become an integral part of everyday retailing. The very last paragraph summarises the concept nicely. Over the last few years,… Read more

The WHY

16 October 2014

    We recently questioned what it is that we do as a business and the ‘what’ we do became the focal point, as we discussed various service offerings and programs. We know ‘what we do’ and hopefully so do… Read more

What about Email communications?

10 October 2014

Receiving and sending email in a work situation has become fundamental and a primary requirement, yet it would appear that very little has changed regarding an individual’s ability to ‘manage’ their email. I’m not referring to technical in the sense… Read more

Bricks leading clicks

2 October 2014

The following is reprinted on behalf of Inside Retail dated 30 September 2014 and is well worth reading. Instore sales are still the driving force behind retail sales despite the trend towards online shopping, according to a poll of more than… Read more

AMP Research Hub findings – very interesting!

25 September 2014

Retailers searching for customer loyalty can look beyond freebies and reward points and involve shoppers in product and service creation, provide expert advice, and show authenticity, according to AMP Capital Shopping Centres’ 2014 Recommended Retail Practice Report (RRP). More than half of… Read more

Are you emotionally intelligent?

14 September 2014

I’ve always been fascinated with the idea of emotional intelligence – the ability to absorb emotional cues and use it to guide behaviour. And the more time I spend in business (marketing in particular) the more it’s clear what a… Read more

Actions that reflect loyalty, according to consumers

11 September 2014

Adults are loyal to five or fewer brands, with their family most often placed with financial service providers and grocery retailers, finds a study conducted by Epsilon and Wylei Research. Consumers surveyed were most likely to define brand loyalty as… Read more

Customer Experience Management market to grow!

1 September 2014

Customer Experience Management (CEM) is the overriding concept driven from high competition among various industry verticals. The major differentiator is how well a business services their customer base. Gone are price / cost differentials, supply chain differentials and individualised product… Read more

The future shopper: They live among us

15 August 2014

This is a great article written by Jon Bird. There is an alien creature that has arrived in our midst, with habits that would be completely unrecognisable to previous generations, and yet they are beginning to reshape the landscape –… Read more

Electronic card spending had another soft month in July!

11 August 2014

Retail electronic card spending was flat for a second month running in July – mainly due to a 0.6% decline in fuel spending (consistent with an estimated seasonally adjusted drop in petrol prices over the month), and a 2.2% decline… Read more

Retail Excellence Awards 2014

10 August 2014

The Retail Excellent Awards for 2014 are underway and HOED NZ, on behalf of the NZRA (New Zealand Retailers Association), is conducting customer experience surveys across New Zealand during the months of July, August and September. Entries for the South… Read more

Further accolade for the HOED team!

10 August 2014

The following was received last week Friday 8 August 2014. Thanks Suzanne I’d like to say how I appreciate your professionalism and quick responses – and I thought your results delivery was extremely well done. You’ll have to pardon my… Read more

Getting back to the basics!

31 July 2014

The following survey results suggest nothing has really changed in how a retailer promotes their business other than relying on the introduction of technology to assist with the message / promotional delivery. The fundamentals are still the same. Word of… Read more

Smartphone traffic to online merchants continues to grow, but tablet traffic remains more valuable!

29 July 2014

As we had suspected smartphone traffic to online merchants continues to grow, but tablet traffic remains more valuable, according to the latest quarterly performance index from MarketLive, providing further support to the notion that smartphones are for research, tablets for… Read more

Customers want an experience that is as fast and as frictionless as possible. Conditioned by years of specials and discounts customers also want a good deal!

25 July 2014

Clients, like the canaries that were used in coal mines to detect lethal gas, are the best early predictors that a firm is in trouble

21 July 2014

In fact, they seem to sense that there are problems ahead well before the business leaders or owners do. The research conducted by Beaton Research+Consulting over a 10 year period has identified that independent measures of client satisfaction started to… Read more

NEW STUDY: EMOTION TRUMPS DATA FOR BUSINESS DECISION MAKERS

21 July 2014

New York [July 15, 2014] – In the age of Big Data it is often assumed that the rational and analytical are the primary drivers of business decision making. A new study from The Fortune Knowledge Group and gyro, the… Read more

Client testimonial

7 July 2014

Recently the HOED team were asked to deliver on a very large project, in an extremely short time-frame. Following is an extract of an email received from the CEO of  the client company, post implementation: Given the short time-frame, it was… Read more

The power of three!

30 June 2014

Trends don’t lie. It is practically irrefutable when three or more survey rounds or waves are conducted and the trend indicates a problem or area for improvement on each occasion. A mishap on one occasion can be forgiven but two… Read more

A fantastic result – one of those WOW moments!

3 June 2014

I wanted to share a recent Mystery Shopper survey experience reported by one of our shoppers today. They were blown away by the service and had this to say (I have removed any reference to the client): I just wanted… Read more

Why mystery shopping is still critical in the age of big data

2 June 2014

April 22, 2014 | by Alicia Kelso There are a variety of ways restaurant operators can get a pulse on unit-level performance, but few provide the same unique, objective perspective of mystery shoppers. Even in an era of Big Data, when… Read more

Growth of Mystery Shopping as a customer service audit tool

23 May 2014

It was recently reported by the Mystery Shopper Providers Association (MSPA) that walk-in mystery shopping surveys in the United Kingdom had broken through 50,000 per month for the first time, and continues to grow at double digits. There are a number… Read more

TOP SHOP Retail Excellence Awards 2014

8 May 2014

Have you considered entering this year’s Top Shop Retail Excellence Awards? HOED NZ is delighted to be partnering with the New Zealand Retailers Association again this year to conduct the Mystery Shopping surveys throughout New Zealand, for the Top Shop… Read more

Measure your online presence

21 April 2014

As online sales grow and shoppers become increasingly comfortable with both a ‘bricks and mortar’ and ‘online’ presence, it is necessary to measure, check, take stock of the latter’s delivery and the customer experience. HOED will develop a survey unique… Read more

The power of three!

21 April 2014

I often explain to customers the power of three – survey waves. What I mean by this is that by completing three Mystery Shopper visits to a given location, will undoubtedly confirm what is actually going on. We go as… Read more

The benefits of Mystery Shopping

21 April 2014

Many businesses will say they are doing well and do not require a Mystery Shopping programme, thereby relying solely on feedback left on a card, over their website or by other means such as the use of real-time feedback using… Read more

What’s really happening with the NZ economy?

10 April 2014

There are many mixed signals at the moment. NZIER recently released their quarterly survey of business opinion (8 Apr 14) with the heading, Recovery surges ahead as firms remain the most confident in 20 years.  On the other hand BNZ’s… Read more

Fall in online purchases by 3% in Feb 14 against Feb 13

8 April 2014

Offshore online retailers continue to pick up more Kiwi dollars than their domestic counterparts, but businesses in both locations fell victim to decreasing purchases in February this year over the same time last year. BNZ’s monthly online Retail Sales Index… Read more

How important is price in the sales process?

25 March 2014

Do customers purchase purely on price? Many do, however if price is taken out of the equation a vast majority will factor in their history with you, the level of engagement with your staff at every level, and how they… Read more

Customer Engagement

24 March 2014

One thing customer’s value highly is an ability for store staff to engage with them when entering your business or shop. HOED conducts many thousands of Customer Experience surveys annually and we have found customers to be very forgiving, particularly… Read more

16 March 2014

The only core competency is LISTENING. – Tom Peters

VIGIL launches real-time customer feedback service

7 March 2014

HOED’s sister company Vigil has launched a new Customer Experience Management (CEM) service, which collects, collates and analyses real-time customer feedback data, using the customers technology of choice, be it Smartphone, Tablet, PC or other via Text, QR Code scan… Read more

Good Service vs Bad Service

24 February 2014

A customer just walked out of your store. There is an 81% chance they will not be back due to a poor customer experience and 69% will NEVER return. How would you rate these customer service experiences? Bad service 74%… Read more

How customers respond to poor service

18 November 2013

Following is an interesting chart displaying various responses elicited from customers post a poor customer service experience. Based on a quick calculation we estimate 39% of customers plan NOT to purchase your products or services again (16%, 13%, and 10%)…. Read more

Customer Engagement

11 November 2013

One thing customer’s value highly is the ability for store staff to engage with them when entering your business or shop. HOED conducts many thousands of Customer Experience surveys annually and we have found customers to be very forgiving, particularly… Read more

Here are six things about retail you may not have known:

30 September 2013

People spend 2.3 seconds on in-store brand decisions. Just over 90% of shoppers make unplanned purchases. About 70% of shoppers say they responded to end-of-aisle signage. Only about 25% off customers walk past halfway in the typical specialty store. Sales… Read more

Quote

11 September 2013

“89% of consumers begin doing business with a competitor following a poor customer experience” IQPC

Are You Just “Keeping Score” or Are You Changing the Game at the same time?

29 August 2013

A lot of organizations make the same mistake when it comes to Customer Experience feedback collection. Are you simply keeping score and a backwards record keep? The companies winning are those who internalize the results, make feedback part of their… Read more

Compliment

28 August 2013

Hi Richard, I have been very satisfied with the quality of work provided by HOED thus far. As a consequence we have plans for another round in Quarter 4. Also I will be asking our other Australian clients to provide… Read more

Why do retailers argue for the supplier and not the customer?

9 August 2013

This is a phenomena I come across all the time. When querying a guarantee period or returning a product the retailer invariably moves to defend the manufacturer/supplier by aggressively stipulating warranty periods etc. Surely the customer should be the retailer’s… Read more

The Pareto Principle states that;

8 August 2013

20% of effort gets 80% of results 20% of projects make 80% of revenues 20% of projects cause 80% of the problems 20% of the people do 80% of the work 20% of the customers generate 80% of the revenue… Read more

When customers walk past a retail store

8 August 2013

When customers walk past a retail store, the retailer has a maximum of three seconds to attract the customer in store (and the same applies to attracting a customer / shopper into a certain zone in the centre) – it’s… Read more

What does customer research really tell us?

8 August 2013

Brain research tells us that only 20% of human beings have a sense of irony, which means that 80% of the world takes everything at face value. Doug Coupland.