By Matt Duczeminski
For bike retailers, evolving their store and servicing to keep up with changing customer expectations from how they like to shop, to how they liked to be kept informed is key to building and maintaining a loyal customer base.
Your store’s customer experience is what keeps your customers coming back for more. If the experience you provide doesn’t live up to your customers’ expectations — or doesn’t do much to differentiate your brand from your competition — your customers won’t have much incentive to stay onboard.
Recently, Vend and Hubtiger have released an integration that will allow your team to streamline a number of customer-facing and internal processes — all with the goal of helping you deliver a top-notch experience to your customers.
In this article, we’ll take a look at the key features of our new integration, and at how some of our current clients have used these features to improve their ability to serve their customer base.
Let’s dive in.
Deliver Personalised Service and Recommendations
We’ve talked about the importance of personalisation before, focusing on retail as a whole.
As a bike shop owner, you should always be looking for ways to show your individual customers that you see them as just that.
As data from Salesforce shows:
- 64% of consumers expect to receive product recommendations based on their purchase and engagement history
- 73% expect companies to understand their needs and expectations
- 62% expect brands to proactively adapt to their evolving needs as time goes on
Vend’s integration with Hubtiger allows your team to provide just what your customers need, whenever they come into your store.
With a clear view of your customer’s purchase history, your sales team can easily make on-the-fly recommendations for additional purchases. This allows you to deliver even more value to your customers — and earn even more revenues from them — with every sale you make.
Similarly, with this data in hand, your team can also point customers toward specific maintenance and repairs services your store offers. What’s more, your team can focus on caring for each individual bike by fitting it with the exact equipment, and the exact maintenance schedule to keep it in tip-top shape.
“Vend and Hubtiger, together, help us deliver personalised maintenance and repair services to each of our customers” – Dewald Oosthuizen, owner of Hellsend Bike Compound
It’s all about keeping a centralised view of the customer at all times. Vend and Hubtiger’s integration offers a holistic overview of your customers, allowing your team to always know how to best cater to their individual needs.
Improve Scheduling and Service Management Processes
While knowing what your customers need at all times is a good first step, delivering it to them seamlessly — and with little to no effort on their part — is just as important.
Vend and Hubtiger enable your team to take a more proactive approach to delivering the personalized offers and experiences mentioned above. At the same time, the integration streamlines customer engagements from their perspective, allowing them to easily get what they need from your brand.
The key focus here is on automating (or otherwise optimising) your service-scheduling processes for your customers.
With our integration, your team can set service reminders to be delivered to individual customers based on their average ride time or distance traveled. Instead of waiting for your customers to reach out with a maintenance request, this allows you to take control of the situation — and ensure your customers’ bikes get the service required for peak performance.
“Hubtiger and Vend ensure our customers will never miss a service appointment — and will always get what they need from our team.”Craig Paton, owner of Sprockets Cycles
Vend and Hubtiger’s integration also helps optimize the transactional and administrative processes involved in servicing your customers’ biking equipment. Hubtiger’s system automatically notifies customers when their bikes are ready to be picked up — and automatically creates a bill of service for your sales team to process at the counter.
On the surface, the benefit is obvious:
The easier and more convenient it is for your customers to get the service they need, the more likely they’ll be to re-engage with your store.
Digging a bit deeper, our integration takes care of much of the behind-the-scenes admin work that goes into scheduling and processing service instances for your team. In turn, your team will have more time, energy, and resources needed to deliver top-notch service to your customers.
Deliver Consistent (and Increasing) Value via Strategic Inventory Management
Strategic inventory management is a cornerstone of retail success — and is essential to your cycle shop’s survival.
For one, it allows you to ensure that the products your customers are looking for stay readily available at all times. Secondly, it ensures your service team always has the right tools, equipment, and parts for any service job that comes their way.
With Vend and Hubtiger’s integration, you’ll have both of these angles covered.
Our integration centralises all of your inventory-related data, giving your team full visibility of your stock levels. What’s more, you’ll be able to keep tabs on incoming stock and supplies, as well.
This, in turn, helps your team set more accurate service schedules, so your customers can get back on their bikes as quickly (and as safely) as possible.
“We pride ourselves on going out of our way to take care of our customers. We do that with a combination of great people and great tech. Hubtiger is the great tech in that equation, helping us achieve a great customer experience, while making our bike shop as efficient as possible.”James Ezra, Managing Director of MC Cyclery in Australia
Going back to product availability, you can use our integration to identify trends in product sales. With this data in hand, you can continue stocking your shelves with products that sell — and avoid purchasing those that just end up collecting dust.
You can also use this information to identify even more products your customers will be interested in purchasing. From there, you can expand your product catalog efficiently and effectively — delivering more and more value to your customers in the process.
Without proper inventory management practices in place, your team simply won’t be able to provide for your customers needs. And you certainly won’t live up to their expectations.
But, with a clear view of your inventory’s flow, you’ll always have exactly what you need on-hand to ensure your customer’s satisfaction.
Enhance Communication With Customers (In Multiple Ways)
Maintaining open and efficient lines of communication with your customers is essential for local cycle shops, for many reasons.
For one thing, the ability to effectively communicate with your customers helps you keep them apprised of any need-to-know information. As we mentioned, Vend and Hubtiger’s integration allows you to deliver updates regarding service progress, product availability, and more to your customers with ease.
Our integration also enables communication via multiple channels, from email and text message to in-app notifications via Hubtiger. In using their preferred method of communication, you all but ensure your customers receive every message you send out.
To that end, our integration allows your team to deliver line-by-line breakdowns of services rendered when processing transactions.
Note that you aren’t looking to rationalize the cost of your services, here.
Rather, the idea is to explain to your customers all that goes into maintaining their equipment. In turn, they become more informed bike owners — and may use the information you’ve given them as a springboard for further learning and growth as a cyclist.
(Of course, the added transparency can improve your brand’s reputation in the eyes of your customers. As Accenture reports, a full two-thirds of consumers say transparency is one of the most attractive qualities of the brands they do business with.)
Communicating with your customers is both opening additional lines of communication with them, and delivering valuable information to your customers through these lines. Our integration with Hubtiger allows your customers to stay in the loop, in the know, and ever-connected to your brand.
Provide Customer-Friendly Payment Options
Giving your customers options as to how they pay for your products and services is key to ensuring transactions go off without a hitch.
(Conversely, failure to provide the preferred options can cause nearly-converted customers to back out of a purchase at the last possible second.)
There are two areas to consider, here.
First, it’s crucial to enable your customers to complete transactions using their preferred payment methods. Vend’s payment processing integrations allow you to process multiple types of payment, from credit and debit card to digital and contactless shopping options.
According to data from Baymard, a lack of payment options is responsible for around six percent of all abandoned shopping carts. If you can recover these customers simply by adding their preferred methods of payment, it just makes sense to do so.
You should also give your customers options with regard to the actual monetary transaction involved in the purchasing process.
A few examples:
- Allowing customers to pay for larger purchases in instalments
- Providing layaway options for big-ticket items
- Taking deposits or other such reservations for currently out-of-stock items
It’s pretty simple:
If your customers don’t feel comfortable giving you their money, they probably aren’t going to do so. And, if they literally can’t pay you because you don’t offer the option that works for them, well…you’re obviously not going to be getting their business.
With Vend’s integration, though, you can allow your customers to take control of their purchasing decisions, and get what they need from your shop in the way that works best for them.
Enhance Your Cycle Shop’s Customer Experience With Vend and Hubtiger
Overall, the many features of Vend and Hubtiger’s integration serve to improve your customers’ various experiences with your cycle shop.
Whether it’s delivering more personalized offers and options, forging closer and deeper connections with customers, or improving your store’s backend processes, our integration enables you to supercharge your team’s efforts and deliver more value to your customers.
Ready to get started? Request a callback for more on how Vend and Hubtiger can help you deliver the branded experience your customers expect — and allow your local cycle shop to stay competitive with the big names in the industry.