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Banks Get a Little Less Hate in Latest Satisfaction Rankings
December 12, 2013
Consumers seem to be softening their hate-hate relationship with the banking industry, according to a new report released Tuesday by the American Customer Satisfaction Index. In fact, customer satisfaction with financial services in general reached a new high in the third quarter of 2013, the report found. The index is up 0.3 percent to 76.7 on a 0 to 100 scale.
Cyber Shoppers Beware! Those Juicy Deals May Be Hot Air
December 07, 2013
This Cyber Monday, retailers of every stripe ran countless ads proclaiming the big shopping day's special deals -- including this one: A Nikon D3200 Two Lens Zoom Kit, originally priced at $799.95, marked down to $499.95. Sounds good, right? We thought so too, but try as we might, we couldn't secure the camera at the deal price. And we tried.
Apple's iBeacon to Follow iPhone-Toting Customers Around Stores
December 06, 2013
Apple has taken a step toward a more interactive shopping experience, activating iOS 7's iBeacon technology at its 254 U.S. retail outlets. It was to start providing information about in-store products and services directly to customers' iPhones, based on their location within the store, on Friday. The iBeacon technology allows Apple to target iPhones within a centimeter.
CRM's Frayed Ends
December 06, 2013
The buyer-seller relationship we most often think of is one in which all the responsibility is loaded on the seller. The seller convinces the customer to buy, then provides support and further marketing to keep the customer loyal. Not every selling relationship works this way, however. When both ends of the sale have a responsibility, things get a little cloudier and more complex.
Consistency Is the Key to Amazing Customer Service
December 05, 2013
Seeking a competitive edge? In any economy and any market, customer service is the key. No matter what your business, if you have one competitor or 100 selling the same product or service, you can tip the scales in your favor by offering a higher level of service. Customers will drive farther, wait longer and even spend more for better service.
5 Key Dashboards for Managing the Season With Confidence
November 30, 2013
For e-commerce companies, the time has finally arrived. After months of extensive preparations, the holidays are here and the top business priority is to drive conversions. Many of these companies have applied valuable lessons from 2012 and previous years by implementing basic Web performance-optimization techniques such as content compression, caching and using content delivery networks.
Black Friday Spread Could Plague Retailers
November 26, 2013
Retailers have been trying for years to expand Black Friday shopping with extended hours and prolonged sales, and this year that trend appears to be reaching new heights, with some stores even planning to be open early on Thanksgiving Day. That's not a universal rule, however. Glenview, Ill.-based Abt Electronics, for instance, is taking a different approach.
Keep Holiday Shoppers Happy, in 3 Easy Steps
November 21, 2013
This holiday season, everything from Nerf N-Strike Elite Hail-Fire Blasters to Doc McStuffins dolls and even diamond jewelry will be purchased via mobile devices to a greater extent than ever before. In fact, mobile shopping will surpass the growth of all other channels during the upcoming holiday season, eMarketer has predicted, as more and more consumers change they way they purchase gifts.
Cloud Efficiency: Different Paths, Same Destination
November 18, 2013
Aggressive use of cloud-computing strategies can significantly improve delivery of applications to end users. Healthcare patient-experience improvement provider Press Ganey and project and portfolio management provider Planview are both exploiting cloud efficiencies and agility. Their paths have been different, but the outcomes speak volumes for how cloud transforms businesses.
9 Ways to Stay Up and Running on Cyber Monday
November 16, 2013
The holiday shopping season is right around the corner, and that means e-commerce companies are now in the midst of the great run-up to the holidays -- an all-out sprint to get every possible new feature, bug fix and version tested and released in time for the big crush. This year, the stakes have been raised even higher with one less week between Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Harvest Customer Intelligence Through Smart Surveying
November 07, 2013
Satisfaction surveys can be much more than a yardstick to measure customer opinion or an extra channel for customer support. The optimal survey presents an opportunity to uncover important insights about your business process and drive real improvements in the organization. Before you can start reaping the customer intelligence benefits that result, however, you have to lay the right groundwork.
Mobile CRM Design, Part 2: Refining the M-Commerce Experience
November 05, 2013
Now that mobile app developers have the basics of user-friendly design down, we've moved into the m-commerce industrial age, according to Pradeep U.N., Symphony Teleca's vice president and global head of design and innovation. Specifically, the mobile app vendors and retailers that rely on this channel are now experimenting with more sophisticated tactics.
Mobile CRM Design, Part 1: Different Devices, Different Rules
October 29, 2013
Most mobile app developers today have the basics of e-commerce design down pat. Increasingly, they are now thinking about the psychology of the user and how that should be factored into a mobile site or app's design. That's where testing becomes essential. "The features and functionalities of smartphones are inherently different from those on tablet devices," said Maxymiser's Daniel Toubian.
Consumers Urged to Wait for Healthcare Website to Heal Itself
October 23, 2013
The only upside for the Obama administration in the troubled launch of the health insurance marketplace is that it is still early days for the program. On Oct. 1, the government rolled out its vehicle for providing health insurance to persons currently without coverage. The rollout featured the launch of HealthCare.gov -- a website where consumers can purchase a policy online.
Microsoft Tops Corporate Social Responsibility Rankings
October 04, 2013
Microsoft has topped the Reputation Institute's Global CSR RepTrak 100 Study for the second year in a row. The institute surveyed 55,000 consumers worldwide about their attitudes toward the reputations of companies in terms of corporate social responsibility. Google, which was No. 2 last year, fell to third place. Four of the top 10 companies in the study are tech firms.
A Last, Lingering Look at Oracle OpenWorld 2013
October 02, 2013
The ghost of Anthony Lye presided over Oracle OpenWorld's third-day customer experience keynote. For CRM and related things, it was the moment I'd been waiting for. Lye is in robust health as far as I know, but he has been gone from Oracle for about a year. He was the architect of Oracle's CRM strategy that resulted in the acquisitions of RightNow Technologies, ATG, Endeca, and other brands.
Oracle Revs Its Cloud Engines for a Better Customer Experience
September 26, 2013
Oracle has upgraded its Customer Experience cloud-based application with enhancements throughout the platform, including the sales, marketing and service modules, the company announced on Wednesday at its Oracle OpenWorld event. From a 30,000-foot view, the Oracle CX improvements can be summed up as offering deeper social integrations, more mobility and streamlined and more intuitive interfaces.
Silverpop Promises a Personalized Web Page for Every Customer
September 03, 2013
It's no longer uncommon for marketers to customize the messages they send via email, but such personalization capabilities haven't typically been extended to Web content. Enter Silverpop, which last week released a beta version of Smart Content, a new product designed to enable just that. Smart Content leverages Silverpop's various modules in marketing and tracking and website design.
Car Makers Face an Increasingly Bumpy Road
August 30, 2013
There is something odd happening between Americans and their usually intense love relationships with their cars. One survey points to a slight, but still worrisome, drop in customer satisfaction with vehicles and light trucks this past year; another shows that Americans are driving less. Is there any overlap? That is, are Americans driving less because of their growing dissatisfaction with their vehicles?
The Customer Service Disaster Domino Theory
August 29, 2013
In examining airplane crashes, investigators often discover that it's not one thing that causes the disaster. It's a chain of interrelated things that go wrong: A mechanical failure or weather event can elicit the wrong reaction from the pilot, which worsens the initial problem and starts a sequence of events that can end very badly. The same is true of customer service meltdowns.

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