Customer experience management continues to mature in Poland. In the non-grocery retail sector in particular, there is a high level of competition amongst brands, with many organizations using CX to try and gain an advantage over their peers.
This is usually a two-pronged strategy: first, brands use customer insight to deepen their understanding of consumers and their lifestyles. Second, they look at ways of harnessing technology to form more seamless experiences across multiple channels. The most adept brands in Poland recognize the prevalence of the smartphone in consumers’ lives and offer services which allow people to ‘dip in’ seamlessly – or choose a different channel and reach their goal with no impediments.
At the forefront of this thinking is Personalization – the pillar which has the greatest weighting on customer loyalty and advocacy in Poland. Customers value the way in which organizations can tailor the experience to their specific needs.
This is certainly exemplified in companies such as the furniture retailer Vox, which is Poland’s biggest mover in 2019’s rankings. Vox made improvements by closely mapping the customer journey and striving to deliver value at each touchpoint. And in terms of the in-store experience, the pillar of Personalization is often about guiding individuals towards the most appropriate purchases, rather than trying to secure a quick sale, and this is undoubtedly one of Vox’s strengths.
One of Poland’s highest-ranking brands is the jewelry retailer W.Kruk, moving up 69 places in the last year to third place. One respondent described the retailer as “a very reliable company of high-class products,” and its website evokes these characteristics. Its customer obsession manifests in its attention to detail: visitors are free to browse, or they can dig a little deeper to receive guidance on long-term jewelry care50, or even read about the best methods for choosing the correct ring size.51 W.Kruk also humanizes many of its jewelry collections, drawing on themes such as friendship and freedom for inspiration, further heightening the perception that it’s a company that honors the individual.52
"This year’s study points to a highly competitive Polish market, with companies providing better customer experiences year after year. The most competitive sector is non-grocery retail, where many companies are fighting for the customer through the implementation of pro-consumer actions. Brands in this sector also have many years of experience in digital channels, both in marketing and sales, and provide a highly personalized online service which is fast and seamless. These attributes could be the key to standing out from the competition in Poland."
KPMG in Poland
In second place is another jewelry retailer - Pandora. Pandora states that it has “for years… inspired women to express their individuality and personal style through feminine jewelry, symbolizing extraordinary moments of life and the most important values.”53 Like W.Kruk, the brand recognizes the importance of the pillar of Personalization.
Pandora is also the leading brand for the pillar of Resolution within Poland. This is partly due to Pandora extending the time for people to return purchased goods from the online store from 14 days to 30. Moreover, the brand also offers a service whereby defective goods can be replaced up to 2 years after the date of purchase. Even a receipt is unnecessary in this scenario; Pandora is happy to refer to the customer’s bank account for proof of purchase.
“Customer service solved my problem very efficiently,” said one customer. “They exchanged a product and I got a new bracelet without the need to provide proof of purchase.”
Poland’s highest-ranking brand is the non-grocery retailer iSpot. It’s a company that describes itself as “the largest Apple Premium Reseller in Poland”54 and specializes in iPhones, iPads, and Macs. And not unlike organizations such as the Apple Store, iSpot offers repair and education services to customers, making Personalization a key pillar for this retailer.
For iSpot, being able to offer a personalized experience relies on the training of its employees – such is the breadth of knowledge that’s required to cover the large range of Apple products. Moreover, these individuals need to advise on a number of complex scenarios, many of which will be unique to a particular customer.
However, this is a discipline that iSpot appears to have mastered, with one respondent to the 2019 research commenting on the brand’s “competent service that can advise on any purchase.” Additionally, iSpot scores highly for Empathy, leading the market in this pillar; it understands the inconvenience of a customer having to be without their phone whilst it’s being mended, and offers replacement devices for the duration of the repair period.
iSpot epitomizes CX best practice in its cross-channel offerings – one of the factors that’s a key differentiator in Poland. For example, customers can track the repair work on their devices in a number of different ways – not only by phoning the store directly, but also by using the brand’s website or via a smartphone. It’s this seamless connectivity that has delivered a boost to companies such as iSpot, and it sets a high standard for Polish peers in other sectors to mimic.