Urban Outfitters’ Decorative Home gets the customer feedback it needs from Bazaarvoice

Company profile

Philadelphia, PA
Retail

Bazaarvoice Solution

Conversations

Client since

2008

Web link
www.urbanoutfitters.com

Summary

Customer feedback affects every decision for the company’s online division, from product design to marketing.

Solution at a glance

Challenge

Get direct feedback from online customers to increase sales and satisfaction.

Solution

Gather information from Bazaarvoice Ratings & Reviews and Ask & Answer.

Benefits

  • Quickly identify and capitalize on opportunities to improve the customer experience.

  • Ratings & Reviews: Receiving feedback directly and responding immediately
  • Ask & Answer: Another way to share information with customers – and vice-versa

For the team of buyers that’s responsible for Urban Outfitters’ Decorative Home business online, customer feedback affects every decision from the way products are designed, to how they’re described on web pages, to the manner in which they’re displayed in photographs.

“We have to be sure that we’re providing the customer with the right product, and with the right product information to make a satisfying purchase,” explains Christine Doobinin, Senior Buyer for the company’s Decorative Home business. “They rely on us for that – and we rely on them for feedback, so we can be sure they get exactly what they’re looking for.”

Doobinin and her team depend on Bazaarvoice Ratings & Reviews for the feedback that tells them whether they’re meeting customer needs, and what they can change to meet them even better. “Seeing the Ratings & Reviews reports is like having a focus group every week,” says Doobinin. “It enables us to best service our customers by hearing directly from them.

Ratings & Reviews: Receiving feedback directly and responding immediately

Urban buyers receive detailed weekly reports from the company’s product marketing team with the latest customer feedback from Ratings & Reviews. The reports provide a wealth of information about what’s selling and why, and they enable the buyers to uncover opportunities to sell even more, or to satisfy customers even better.

One recent example Doobinin cites is a retro-styled audio cabinet that immediately became one of the company’s most popular Decorative Home products. But even though sales were strong, and reviews were overwhelmingly positive, Doobinin noticed that some customers were reporting that the cabinet dimensions didn’t accommodate their audio equipment. Based on that, she took the initial step of featuring the cabinet interior dimensions more prominently in the product description, so that a potential customer could determine before ordering whether the dimensions would work. Then, to address the issue long-term, she had the product designers develop a new iteration of the console with more depth to accommodate a wider range of audio components.

“No matter how well we’re doing, we always want to improve by listening to the customer feedback we get,” says Doobinin. “Having that direct feedback helps us do our jobs better and helps us focus even more on serving customers better.”

Ask & Answer: Another way to share information with customers – and vice-versa

Urban Outfitters’ buying team also relies on Bazaarvoice Ask & Answer to exchange information with customers. Ask & Answer lets customers ask questions about products directly and quickly get a response – whether from Urban Outfitters or from other customers.

“Ask & Answer provides us with an immediate opportunity to respond to questions and to take steps to address whatever underlying concerns prompted them,” according to Doobinin. For example, one customer wanted to know if he could remove the legs from a sofa he was considering buying, to fit it through an interior doorway. This gave the company the opportunity to explain that the sofa comes disassembled so that it fits easily through any doorway – and then to change the product copy to make that clear from the outset.

The popularity of Ask & Answer among customers points to how important the online community experience is. The company is now looking at ways to expand the community aspect of the website to make it even easier for customers to share information and photos with each other.

“It’s all about getting customers the information they need and making their decisions easier,” says Doobinin, “and Bazaarvoice helps us do that.”

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