Online Customer Experience and Family Mystery Shops


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Inc. Magazine: How to Set Up a Mystery Shopping ProgramInc.
Inc. Magazine recently interviewed Elaine Buxton, President and CEO of Confero, and other industry experts in a piece on how to set up a mystery shopping program. Elaine discusses growth through building market share in a tough economic climate, and the importance of doing this through winning customers. The article also touches on how to evaluate mystery shopping providers and details on designing, launching and appraising a program.  

Read the full article here

Family Dining Mystery Shops


Nations Restaurant News recently reported in the article, "Restaurants put Marketing Muscle behind Kids' menus," that families are returning to restaurants.  This is good news for restaurants that focus on attracting the family dining segment. Whether they use an e-mail blast, radio ads, table tents or a combination of communication methods, restaurants benefit from a family strategy that allows them to bring in more customers and deliver a dining experience that encourages families to return.

Read the full article here.
"Evaluate and Motivate"; Confero's Insights Highlighted in Retail MerchandiserRM Mag
Confero's insights about incentives are highlighted in Retail Merchandisers's recent, "Evaluate and Motivate," article.  Employee motivation during the busy holiday selling period is key to maximized sales. Stores want their employees to offer excellent service even when they feel overwhelmed, and providing incentives is a great way to do this. Retail employees who provide a positive experience for customers--especially for those who may not usually shop at the store--increase the chance that more customers will return to buy after the holidays. 

Read the full article here.

November 2010: Low Hanging Fruit: These Stats Show Opportunities to Best the Competition


There's good news for restaurants: Families are eating out more. As of the quarter ending in August, the number of restaurant visits with children increased 1% from a year ago. Better yet, this increase is the first following a 3-year downward trend.

Read the full article here.
How Will New Gift Card Rules Impact You and Your Customers? 
holiday giftcardGift cards are always an important element of retail offerings during the holiday season, but perhaps even more so this year, as companies conform to new gift card rules. While consumers increasingly choose gift cards for holiday purchases, 13% of customers indicated in the 2010 gift card survey that they would be reluctant to purchase gift cards with expiration dates and additional fees. Now, thanks to new rules, consumers have fewer fees to consider when deciding on gift cards.

Read the full article here.
Don't Forget the Online Aspect of Customer Experienceonline_shopping
Online sales are expected to increase 7-9% this holiday season as compared to other retail sales, which are expected to jump 2%. Just as measuring customer experience in the store and over the phone is eye-opening; measuring the online experience enables companies to gain feedback that can lead to improved offerings. In the retail environment, managers can overhear and observe customer interactions. Managers can't make concrete observations during an online experience, so some type of measurement mechanism for online experiences is even more imperative. 

Read the full article here.

Confero Featured as "Hidden Giant"cary citizen
Elaine Buxton was recently featured in the "Hidden Giants" series in the Cary Citizen. The Hidden Giant series uncovers stories about large, vibrant businesses that residents may not know. Many of them, similar to Confero, make a big impact locally and nationally with their commitment to community and their industries. In the article, Elaine discusses her thoughts on the future of the mystery shopping industry and shares personal details about Confero, a family-owned business recently recognized as a Top 50 Family Friendly Company by Carolina Parent.

Read the full article here.

November 2010

Issue: 9
In This Issue
Inc. Magazine: How to Set Up a Mystery Shopping Program
Family Dining Mystery Shops
Confero's Insights Highlighted in Retail Merchandiser
November 2010: Low Hanging Fruit: These Stats Show Opportunities to Best the Competition
How Will New Gift Card Rules Impact You and Your Customers?
Don't Forget the Online Aspect of Customer Experience
Confero Featured as "Hidden Giant"


New Words to Know


m-commerce= mobile commerce. Using Smartphone and handheld computers with wireless connections to place orders and transact business over the Web.

RFID, Radio-frequency identification.  It's similar to a bar code or magnetic strip on a credit card, but it is uniquely identified for an object, an animal or person.  The RFID can be scanned to get information about the object or where it has been.

Astroturfing- the practice of creating fake chatter about a topic to create the illusion of a grass-roots movement---this is common practice on Twitter, according to a study.

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Elaine Buxton

President & CEO


Confero, Inc.     1152 Executive Circle, Suite 100     Cary, NC 27511

(t): 800-447-3947     (f): 919-380-7136