Grocer Waitrose is to gather real-time feedback from customers about their in-store experience to ensure the best standards of service.

The retailer will enable shoppers to comment on any aspect of their experience using text messaging, email, web or freephone and promote the initiative on receipts, flyers and posters.

Waitrose is deploying an engagement platform from Fizzback which organises customer comment, pulling out information such as subject, sentiment, location and behavioural indicators, which can be used to measure performance against the retailer’s key performance indicators.

Waitrose executives and store managers will have “personalised views of real-time customer responses” using a dashboard featuring key performance indicators, verbatim comment and analysis.

Fizzback said: “Because comments can be linked back to individual stores managers have a single, consistent view of staff performance and so are able to give better coaching and feedback.

“Arranging verbatim comments according to categories also allows management to quickly pinpoint any operational issues and take appropriate action.”

Adoption of the system is likely to be especially useful in supporting Waitrose’s expansion, including the opening of 300 convenience stores over the next 10 years.

Waitrose customer research and insight manager Helen Tabrett said the Fizzback service should suit customers’ busy lives by making feedback convenient.

She said: “We get comments about service, the store environment, products and pricing and, whether the feedback is good or bad, it’s important that we hear it fast and take action.”

The Fizzback system is used already by other retailers, including Carphone Warehouse and Marks & Spencer.