Chico's

How the international women’s retailer keeps customers engaged

overview

Over 30 years ago, Chico’s opened its first women’s clothing shop on Florida’s Sanibel Island.

Fast Facts

Industry:

Retail

Role:

Marketers

Insights professionals

Product Managers

Sales

Use case:

Customer experience

Marketing effectiveness

Product innovation

Business Outcome:

Improve customer satisfaction

Accelerate innovation

Drive revenue growth

De-risk decisions

Business Challenge

As the company grew into a leading retailer with over 700 locations in multiple countries, it needed to stay in touch with its loyal shoppers—just as it had in the past.

Solution

Chat with Chico’s is an insight community of 14,000 women who continuously provide feedback on how the retailer can improve products, marketing efforts and store design. The community allowed Chico’s to maintain a close relationship with its customers, keeping them engaged and coming back.

Chat with Chico’s played a fundamental role throughout major shifts in the retail industry. For example, insight helped the brand better understand the post-recession and tech-savvy female customer. Chico’s customers were less frivolous and more mindful of spending habits. They also made better use of the many digital options available and were more likely to buy online and on mobile. Feedback highlighted how customers wanted a mobile-friendly, simple user experience when purchasing from and communicating with the brand.

Chico’s used its community in another innovative way by tying member feedback to transactional data. This allowed the brand to make correlations between customer insight and purchase history; for example, what spending habits consumers have, how long they’ve been a customer of Chico’s and what they last bought or plan to purchase. Insight helped Chico’s learn from past experience to improve discussions, add context, build loyalty and drive smarter decisions.

Chico’s wanted to gather customer feedback on a new style of pants. The company launched a series of wear tests with insight community members, giving them free merchandise in exchange for real-time feedback. Feedback revealed that many shoppers were unclear how to pair the new pants with shoes and their existing wardrobe. To ensure the product’s success, Chico’s used the marketing campaign to educate consumers and show them how to wear the latest trend.

The future is unknown—it’s constantly evolving. The customer intelligence we capture through our insight community helps us understand our female shoppers, so we can meet their needs and be with them through changes.

-Ivy Boehm, Senior Director, Consumer Insights, Chico’s

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