We manufacture products so that you, our end customers, can use them – so of course your satisfaction is extremely important to us. We know that you have high expectations on the performance, safety and ecological manufacturing of our products. After all, you want to have fun engaging in outdoor activities safely – with products that are as "clean" as possible.
And to be honest, we really care about our customers coming back and telling us about their experiences with our products – either positive and negative. We see your feedback as a chance to improve our products and services.
After all, we know that only a small percentage of dissatisfied customers express their concerns to us and that we often don’t get a chance to hear about their frustrations. These customers will probably avoid our products in the future and share their disappointment in their own circle of friends. On the one hand, this eliminates our chance for improvement, and on the other hand, it curbs these potential customers from buying our products.
Retailers are also important partners. They are our direct link to our end customers. They receive unfiltered customer feedback on our products and pass this on to us. In order to sell our products successfully, our partners must have confidence in VAUDE and in VAUDE products. A good partnership and long-term cooperation with our retailers is therefore of utmost importance to us.
We at VAUDE rely on contact with our customers that is as direct as possible – with retailers as well as with consumers. Our sales representatives’ close contact with retail as well as regular meetings with major customers provides us with a precise picture of our customers’ needs and their level of satisfaction. This feedback flows directly into the development of our product collections.
Based on seasonal complaint rates, we can see where we are not meeting our customers’ needs. These evaluations provide us with valuable feedback on customer satisfaction and are incorporated into the development of future product collections. Significant issues are also included in our internal documentation and training programs. These documents for quality standards are reviewed and updated annually.
This information and feedback is incorporated directly back into our product development and quality requirements.
While in the past we primarily evaluated complaint figures systematically and directed this information into the development of our collections, quality documents and training, we are now evaluating all of the information from Zendesk systematically and using it to improve our products and performance. We still see potential here to gain more meaningful information for increasing customer satisfaction.
For 2019, we once again evaluated customer satisfaction with the Zendesk Satisfaction Score to draw conclusions about our service.
The Satisfaction Score in 2019 was 78 %, which means that we exceeded our target of 76 %. By simplifying the evaluation process, we hope to increase our rate even more.
There were some bad reviews, for example, as a result of "old baggage" such as missing spare parts or defective trolley wheels. Based on these findings, the "Optimization of Spare Parts Management" project was launched in 2016. The goal is to have all necessary spare parts in sufficient quantities and colors available. The positive effects of this measure can now be seen in our good customer ratings and the rising number of spare parts sold.
You can share your level of satisfaction using a point system and by writing your own reviews. We have not yet implemented a systematic, qualitative analysis of the comments. However, conclusions can be drawn from the customer’s point based ratings.
Products can be rated with up to five stars. We evaluate four to five stars as positive, three stars as neutral and zero to 2 stars as negative. In 2019, 928 reviews were made. 83.73 % of these were positive, 5.93 % were neutral and 10.34 % were negative.
Not only are our pictures, videos and posts commented on and shared, many of you take the opportunity to write to us directly. We take your feedback and, when appropriate, refer you back to our support platform at help.vaude.com.
This is another indication of customer satisfaction for us. And by the way, almost all of the products that won awards meet our Green Shape criteria. You can find an overview and background information on our product awards on our blog.
After the launch in 2013 and its continuation in 2015, we once again actively participated in a satisfaction survey of retailers conducted by the independent market research institute "Benchmark Excellence" in 2016/17. Retailers from all over Germany were asked to rate 13 outdoor brands. The Benchmarking objective: the systematical assessment of manufacturers by retail customers in order to adopt better policies and to improve cooperation with retail.
In 2019 the satisfaction study was not carried out, therefore we continue to refer to the results of 2016/17.
In 2013 and 2015, VAUDE achieved the top overall rating in the study – by a wide margin. In the third survey 2016/17, VAUDE maintained its 1st place position and even expanded upon it. We see this ranking as a valuable confirmation of our beloved partnerships with retail. The following criteria were surveyed in the study: