From restaurants and retail to banking and more, curbside pickup services have emerged as the new, convenient, and fast way to provide customers with seamless, satisfying experiences. As curbside pickup services continue to grow, one important area of focus is figuring out how to personalize this service for your customers.
While some customers have been using curbside on repeat, others are trying it out for the first time and don’t know what to expect. That’s why personalization in communication and messaging is going to make a huge difference in being able to provide the best experience possible. For all customers, regardless of how often they use your curbside services, communication should always be clear and up-to-date - both before, during, and after.
Given the increase in omnichannel consumer behavior, curbside services are likely here to stay for the long-term. With that in mind, here are a few types of customers to consider when personalizing your curbside pickup services!
New curbside shopper
Arguably the most important factor for new curbside shoppers is to perfect and customize the communication. For someone who hasn’t used your services before - even if they are familiar with your physical store or branch locations - the communication should be crystal clear on every single aspect. The focus should be on educating the customer, while alleviating any concerns over using the new service. Things to consider communicating in an email or text message for an online order or service appointment:
What do they need to have with them to provide your staff member (order or appointment confirmation, identification, etc.)?
What signage should they look for in the parking lot?
Where should they park?
What time or time frame do they need to arrive by?
What should they expect once they arrive?
How should they notify you once they’ve arrived?
What other ways can they contact you?
What can they expect after the order is delivered or service is complete?
Your staff should also be doing everything they can to make the new curbside shopper’s experience as seamless as possible. Being able to note that this is their first time using curbside will let your staff know to be prepared to help with any questions. They should support the customer and ensure they feel comfortable with the process. For example, if your curbside services require that the customer calls in upon arrival, make sure the staff member clearly explains next steps in the process after they call in.
If you can provide a safe, simple, and intuitive experience for the first-time curbside customer, you’re well on your way to having them turn into a return curbside customer!
Return curbside customer
The return curbside customer knows your process, and has used your curbside pickup or services before. So, what can you do to improve their experience? This is all going to be about nurturing the customer and giving them more personalized communication before, during, and after the process. This personalized communication lets the customer know you care. In fact, 72% of consumers say they only engage with personalized messaging.
While you should still be clear on things like where to park, how the process works, and more (especially since it’s likely the process has changed since you first started offering these services), the focus should be on a frictionless experience. An experience so great, that they’ll turn into the next stage: a curbside loyalist.
After they make a purchase or schedule a curbside service like opening an account, you should send a personalized email to them recommending other products based on their previous purchases or other services based on prior conversations. You can also use it as an opportunity to recommend a complementary product, as an example, if a customer is picking up a salad bowl, perhaps they’re in need of tongs or a salad spinner. This way they know you’re paying attention to their needs and providing exceptional service. By tailoring communications and recommendations specific to them, you will build stronger relationships and show that you truly care about their wants and needs.
The curbside loyalist
The curbside loyalist - they love you, they love your products, they love your services, and they keep coming back for more. They love the instant gratification of being able to get help or pick up orders without having to leave their car. So how do you continue to meet and exceed their expectations? How do you ensure they stay loyal?
Again, personalization is key here. Maybe instead of the same email you always send out as a follow-up, you can mix up your messaging and thank them for being a loyal curbside customer.
You should also reward their loyalty. If you’re a retailer, you could offer a discount for their next curbside purchase. Or if you have a loyalty program, you could give your customers additional points when placing a curbside order. If you’re a financial institution, you could do something like offering a free financial workshop for those who have used your curbside services. Continuing to exceed the curbside loyalist with rewards and perks will ensure they stay loyal. And if you’re offering the types of personalized, frictionless experiences they expect - they might also tell a friend or family member!
Putting in the effort to personalize each curbside experience for your customers is going to make you stand out from the crowd, and ensure you are able to increase customer satisfaction and loyalty. And if you aren’t implementing curbside pickup services at your branch or store, then what are you waiting for? The benefits for your customers are undeniable: safe, convenient, easy, and fast. And while digital banking and online shopping are also on the rise, there will always be customers who want the option of an on-demand service like curbside.
Want to learn more? Check out our blog post on best practices for curbside pickup to meet omnichannel demand.
About the author
The JRNI team is made up of product, customer, and technical experts who are focused on driving personalized experiences - for our customers, and for theirs. The JRNI blog enables us to dive into how retail and financial organizations can use personalized experiences to grow profitability, build stronger customer relationships, and drive customer loyalty.
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