Carpetright’s head of customer experience said the retailer uses real-time customer feedback to increase its like-for-like sales.

Head of customer experience Toni Adams said she used shopper feedback to engage staff from the shopfloor to head office to improve the retailer’s in-store experience.

Speaking at Retail Week’s Customer Experience conference, Adams said her appointment 18 months ago indicated a stepchange in how the retailer operated.

“For 25 years Carpetright has been focused on sales and not focused on service and in today’s market we cannot operate like that anymore,” said Adams.

“Historically we’d assume that if a customer wanted something they’d want it at half price, so our store assistants would immediately take them there and they’d immediately assume our range wasn’t good as a result.”

Adams implemented a customer feedback initiative entitled ‘Do We Measure Up?’ which allowed shoppers to offer feedback as they left the store without purchasing, or at the point of purchase and when their carpet was fitted.

“Our biggest measure is forget about the price and listen to the comments – if you are getting it right shoppers will pay for it,” said Adams, adding that Carpetright has seen an uplift in like-for-like sales in the stores that scored well on this feedback of “between 10% and 100%”.

Carpetright, which reported a 2.9% rise in like-for-likes sales in its full-year results in April, also started displaying real-time feedback from customers to screens placed throughout its head office last year.

Adams said making this feedback accessible to head office in real time triggered a cultural shift in senior management’s engagement with customers.

“If management let the stores down the stores let the customers down,” said Adams, who said the retailer now alerts regional management to any negative customer reviews given in their area, which they are given two days to respond to before the complaint is escalated.

The retailer’s customer experience boss said that collecting data and customer feedback was a vital part of Carpetright’s growth strategy.

“It’s about making sure you’ve got the right questions as our insight is getting to a point where it is telling us what we know already know,” said Adams.

“Now we’re at a process of revising the questions so we can see if the right things are happening in stores and that will show us where to refocus our attention.”