Making a success of a business as an independent retailer is much tougher these days – but not if you’re Debbie Rogers. Her shop, The Boutique, is approaching its fifth anniversary and has gone from strength to strength. Debbie now employs three people and is currently working towards expansion, with Glamorous Couture opening on the second floor of her Guildhall Court shop in October. Debbie is a familiar face at the Grantham Journal Business Awards, as a previous winner and runner-up in several categories. This time, it’s the Customer Care award, and it means a lot to Debbie and her team.
How does winning customer care compare with the other Journal business awards you’ve won?
At The Boutique we have built our entire service around customer care, it is at the very forefront of our business ethos. It’s absolutely vital to us that the customer always feels welcome and that our customer experience is of the highest standard. We want people to enjoy their time with us and want to come back.
What makes customer care at The Boutique stand out above other retailers?
We always try and go above and beyond to help our customers. We now offer exclusive online offers, that customers can reserve before they even hit the rails in the shop. If a customer is looking for something particular, a certain colour or size, we will do our utmost to accommodate them. Even if we cannot help our customers directly, we will suggest another local retailer they could try that might have what they are looking for. Helping our customers is our number one priority, even if it’s sometimes sending them to other shops.
Why is customer care important to you?
The Boutique was built on the success of our customer care. At the beginning, word of mouth and returning customers was paramount to our success as a business. Excellent customer care and making sure we put our customers first is the reason we are still running after four years.
How do you ensure quality customer care in your staff?
As customer service is our number one priority we always ensure that our staff understand the importance of a high quality service and shopping experience for all customers. Staff are continuously trained on various aspects of the business, ranging from steam pressing clothes to gift wrapping.
How does it feel to be part of such a close knit business community?
Grantham is a fantastic place to do business, we all work together to create a town-wide shopping experience. No one business can succeed simply on their own anymore and therefore it is crucial that we all band together, help each other and promote each other to make Grantham a successful town. The Boutique has always been involved with local community groups, Go Grantham BID and Grantham Business Club; it’s about the business community working together to achieve something positive.