Customer ratings and reviews have become essential to Dell’s strategy for driving sales and powering innovation across its worldwide organisation since 2006. The company has measured double-digit growth in online conversion rates since working with Bazaarvoice to implement ratings and reviews in Europe, as well as a triple-digit increase in the number of reviews collected.
A strong review programme ensures that Dell has significant volumes of customer data at its disposal to drive strategic decision-making. As Michael Buck, Executive Director, Global CSMB Online Marketing, explains, “Reviews and other social data allow manufacturers like Dell to become more customer-centric. They in particular expose engineering teams and other non-customer-facing groups to customer feedback they would not be directly exposed to otherwise.”
The intelligence that reviews provide internally leads to improvements in Dell products, services and solutions that will ultimately improve client satisfaction and loyalty. According to Buck, this ability to use social data as business insight for effecting manufacturing and service improvements is just as important as the improved sales and marketing results that reviews bring to the business.
Building a more customer-centric business, one country at a time
Social media adoption has rapidly grown throughout Europe, creating a strong need for review programmes that enable customers to interact with brands. Dell’s programme for customer ratings and reviews is in place across all three of the major Western European markets – the UK, France and Germany.
“Customers in Germany, like customers everywhere in Europe, want businesses to listen to them and respond to their needs,” says Buck. “German customers also demand the highest quality of service from companies with whom they do business.” The Bazaarvoice social commerce platform helps Dell deliver both.
Earning customer trust to increase review volume and impact
Gaining consumer trust in the Dell brand is a primary driver for making customer reviews integral to how the company operates and weaving insights into multiple teams in the business. To that end, Dell and Bazaarvoice share a commitment to authenticity of customer content, ensuring that all approved reviews – both positive and negative – are posted to the site. This demonstrates transparency to customers and further provides valuable insights for product development teams. Dell also showcases reviews throughout their global sites and features them extensively in marketing materials, for maximum visibility to customers throughout the buying cycle.
“You want a straightforward, transparent process that shows customers that the customer voice really is being taken into consideration,” he says. “If you receive a good review, it’s important to understand why – and likewise, it’s important to learn from a bad review. A review isn’t the end of your customer relationship; it’s only the beginning. It’s an opportunity to engage directly and find out more.”
Driving action with insights
Dell has seen many instances of the company applying what it has learned in reviews to making product improvements. One of the company’s current notebooks, for example, has 20 features that engineering changed from one generation of the product to the next based on customer feedback. Customer-driven changes cover the spectrum from thermal improvements, to ergonomic alternations, to design enhancements – even in the seemingly smallest considerations, such as where USB entry ports are placed compared to other ports.
“We have a strong belief that customer feedback helps us improve products and services,” says Buck, “and Bazaarvoice has given us a way to scale that process. For us, reviews were a very logical step in our journey to become more customer-centric.”
The bottom line
Putting the customer at the centre of how Dell does business is the company’s greatest priority, as it works to improve its products and services, and its relationships with customers. Dell’s implementation of the Bazaarvoice platform has enabled its ability to fulfil the vision of becoming a truly customer-centric business.
For more than 26 years, Dell has empowered countries, communities, customers and people everywhere to use technology to realize their dreams. Customers trust Dell to deliver technology solutions that help them do and achieve more, whether they’re at home, work, school or anywhere in their world.