Furthermore, as a loyalty consultant, I recognise how important CX is to business success.
I have transacted via Target Australia Online several times in the past 6 months, out of necessity and ‘convenience’, only to find I should have simply driven to a store.
While the online browsing and transactional experience is not particularly woeful, the disappointment and frustration that ensues for days after the order confirmation comes through is like the aftermath of bad takeout.
The process follows a familiar route, until a point where there is a horror twist in the plot.
Multiple horror twists.
Like watching your favourite characters be killed off.
A classic ‘Target Australia Online’ tale
Once upon a time there was a joyful loyalty consultant.
She wished to purchase some slippers, homewares and children’s gifts online.
After typing in specific terms into Google, she became aware that all items she was seeking were available on Target Online.
She went through a relatively acceptable online browsing experience on Target.com.au selecting and purchasing the desired items.
Confirmation email was received and she continued with her day.
The next day, the joyful loyalty consultant woke to the sounds of birds tweeting outside her window and the gentle scent of spring on the breeze.
She began her day glancing at push notifications on her phone only to realise she had received an email from Target Online mentioning that one of the items she had purchased the day prior, was out of stock and funds transferred back to her account.
*Note to self: Check bank account for $4 refund*
Despite the minor hiccup to the morning, she continued with her day, designing epic loyalty programs for the world’s best brands.
The next day, she awoke again to a push notification. Another item out of stock. Another refund. Keep an eye out for $5.80.
For the following days a similar pattern was witnessed.
Then the package finally arrived, a shadow of the online order that was promised.
This experience could perhaps be attributed to an issue between the inventory tracking and the website, she pondered.
However, the sequel to the tale follows the loyalty consultant’s husband as he experiences an almost identical experience with Target Online, only to receive no package at all. The quest to find said products in a local Target store is fraught with dread and aisles of disorganised product and no staff around to assist.
A true horror story.
Impacts on loyalty
So, what has this got to do with loyalty or a loyalty program?
A fair bit actually.
I will never be loyal to Target Online as long as the online experience is thus because they are unreliable and do not appear to care about the customer. The app is also somewhat challenging. Read all about it here: TARGET SHOP+: EXECUTION IS CRITICAL TO LOYALTY PROGRAM SUCCESS.
As far as a loyalty program goes, a good program needs to coexist within a business which is committed to an excellent customer experience. One cannot expect a loyalty program to excel when overlayed upon poor delivery of products and service.
It’s going to take a lot more than the flybuys loyalty program to make me spend at Target Online again. In fact, I do not recall there being sufficient promotion of the flybuys partnership during the online shopping process.
You can’t polish a…… turbulent customer experience by slapping on a loyalty program. The program must be complementary to exemplary existing practices OR designed to transform the entire business, evolving and adapting to changing customer needs.
Contact us today to talk to the loyalty consultants that understand the art and the science behind loyalty programs.