Business Messages helps Foot Locker
meet its core customers where they are
Foot Locker, Inc., founded in 1974, leads the celebration of sneaker and youth culture around the globe through a portfolio of retail brands including Foot Locker, Kids Foot Locker, Champs Sports, Eastbay, atmos, WSS, Footaction, and Sidestep. With approximately 3,000 retail stores in 28 countries around the world.
New York, NYwww.footlocker-inc.com
decrease in AHT
points increase in CSAT
of questions were product-related
of all messages started from the Phone entry point
“Google’s Business Messages enables us to serve our customers where they feel most comfortable engaging at their own speed.”
Bobby Krauss, Social Media VOC, Foot Locker
In early 2021, Foot Locker implemented Google’s Business Messages to provide customers timely and convenient support right from Google Search and Maps. Business Messages delivered results right out of the gate as Foot Locker’s overall CSAT score increased by 10 points during the company’s busiest period (Sept-Dec 2021). Additionally, Foot Locker’s customer care team was able to reduce average handle times (AHT) from 33 seconds down to 29 seconds per interaction (a 12% decrease). Meanwhile, within a few months of the launch, Business Messages became one of Foot Locker customers' most preferred forms of contact over other social channels.
By early 2020, a significant shift in Foot Locker customers’ needs had emerged: an ever-increasing number of them were seeking information online before visiting a store (e.g., “Can I get this pair of sneakers at a store near me?”). This was particularly true among the all-important Gen Z segment at the core of Foot Locker’s target audience. And this trend was only accelerating further due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Accordingly, Foot Locker quickly sought ways to update its customer care system to meet these young consumers right where so many of them go to find product information: Google Search and Maps.
The Foot Locker team was also looking to offer its customers a modern channel for communication. It was critical that the solution they chose accounted for the fact that customers typically go in and out of chat sessions and want to engage on their own time and at their own pace. The company turned to Business Messages, as it enabled customers to begin a conversation with the brand right from Google Search and Maps, while also allowing them to decide when they wanted to start or finish a particular chat session. It also provided Foot Locker customers the opportunity to have personalized one-on-one conversations with the brand.
The Foot Locker team believed asynchronous messaging would provide its customers a better overall experience with the brand: “Google’s Business Messages enables us to serve our customers where they feel most comfortable engaging. And at their own speed.” said Bobby Krauss, Foot Locker's Social Media VOC.
Foot Locker partnered with Sprinklr, a Unified-CXM
platform, to set up and implement Google’s Business
Messages. The initial launch was at Kids Foot Locker stores
in January 2021, and the rollout rapidly expanded from there
over the next several months to include additional store
brands: Foot Locker, Champs Sports, and Eastbay.
Since Foot Locker was leveraging its live agent care team, the company needed to be mindful of what levels of chat volume
would emerge and to make sure the care team was
properly structured and resourced. One of the advantages
offered by the Sprinklr platform is that it allowed agents to
manage multiple customers at the same time, enabling them to support high levels of chat volume when necessary.
In phase one of the rollout, the company decided to enlist a limited number of customer care reps. After analyzing the early results with regard to conversation volume, Foot Locker was able to phase in the aforementioned brands while gradually growing their care team to ensure the best possible customer experience.
Within only three months of launching Google’s Business Messages, this channel became one of their most preferred form of contact across all social channels.
Average CSAT increased by 10 points during Foot Locker’s busiest time period: September to December 2021.
Foot Locker’s customers are choosing to use messaging more frequently, and the customer care team is viewed more favorably, thanks to this new channel.
Looking ahead, Foot Locker has plans to expand its use of Business Messages and looks to lead the way in conversational commerce, “We’re excited about the future with Business Messages and continuing to optimize the shopping journey. This channel has helped us learn what our customers are searching for and how best to provide them support right when they need it.”