Several years ago I noted that buying a book from Amazon.com was much faster than buying the same book from BN.com or Borders.com because the site was easier to use and faster. I have watched over the years as Amazon.com has added additional products to their site, many of which I have purchased because I know the site, trust it, and find it easy to use. Also, because what I was buying at that time I could not easily identify another retail source that I felt would be appropriate for that type of item.
My mom called me this morning to tell me her CRT monitor finally died. Since she is 81 years old, and no longer drives, I decided I wanted to get her a new monitor and have it shipped to her. I started with BestBuy.com since I know the store and have used their website previously. Finding a monitor selection turned out to be problematic since they seemed to want to sort the available monitors in odd ways for me without showing me everything in any easy way.
I then flipped to Amazon.com and quickly found a GREAT monitor for $40 less than anything I had struggled to find at BestBuy.com, bought it, and it will be to her on Tuesday. She’s thrilled, I am a good son, and once more I am reminded that helping the customer buy the way they want to buy is critical to business success. Best Buy may have survived this current retail crunch, helped somewhat by Circuit City’s ill advised pay change policy, but there are more ways to buy than brick and mortar as Amazon.com showed Barnes and Noble and Borders.
Are your sales processes focused on helping the right customer buy right, or to make it easy on you?