Wayfair’s Customer-Centric Culture Helps Drive Brand Loyalty

Wayfair, one of the world’s largest online selections of furniture, home furnishings, décor, and goods, including more than seven million products from more than 7,000 suppliers, has always been about developing, maintaining and strengthening its customer-centric culture that sparks brand loyalty.

That ongoing theme earned Wayfair the Platinum Award in the 2016 Loyalty360 CX Awards at the 6th annual Engagement & Experience Expo presented by Loyalty360.

Founded in 2002, Wayfair went public in October 2014, and CX metrics are at the core of the company’s operations.

Wayfair CEO Niraj Shah is “thrilled about the momentum we’re seeing in our business right now both in terms of revenue growth and profitability, but also in terms of the progress we’re making on the key strategic initiatives we have been investing in for about two years,” he noted during the company’s recent first-quarter earnings call.
In 2016 Wayfair added more than 1,800 new employees to help drive the company’s customer-centric culture and brand loyalty.

“We have been especially pleased to see how they and the initiatives they are driving have hit their stride,” Shah said. “The ramp-up curve is always painful when you hit a spike in hiring. But now after fully integrating those 1,800 new hires, we feel like we've continued to assemble a truly impressive team that is firing on all cylinders.”
Direct retail revenue rose 32 percent in the first quarter, to $940 million.

“We have several major initiatives in the U.S. as we continued to improve our overall offering to deliver an exceptional experience for our customer,” Shah added. “One such initiative was taking some of those 1,800 new hires in 2016 and staffing up dedicated teams to go after categories in our total addressable market, where we’re smaller relative to our market potential, such as home improvement, seasonal decor, housewares, wedding registry, mattresses, and decorative accents. We’re starting to see traction in these categories as we develop supplier relationships, enhance the visual merchandising and, in some cases, develop specialized sales teams to support these particular categories.”

Shah noted an example of an area where Wayfair is seeing great progress: Home improvement.

“Most of the online and offline market for home improvement today is serviced in poorly merchandised settings that are more oriented for male customers,” Shah added. “We believe that the same customers we have shopping our Wayfair sites, who are primarily female, are also the ones selecting which showerhead, wall scones, kitchen backsplash tile, and bathroom vanity they want in their house. We’re successfully building a home improvement business because she wants the same vast selection to choose from and the same great virtual merchandising that we deliver for our other categories.”

Liz Graham, vice president of sales and services for Wayfair, said the company is technology-driven.

“It’s an incredibly validating experience,” Graham said, after receiving the Platinum Award in December. “We’re really trying to crack this personalization at a massive scale,” Graham said.

Wayfair is dedicated to accelerating and facilitating the shift to online shopping by improving the customer experience through superior customer service, expert buying advice, and cutting-edge visualization technology. The company’s entrepreneurial culture allows it to efficiently identify customer needs and immediately implement innovative solutions. Employees are empowered to contribute ideas, make decisions, and take ownership of projects and key initiates to continue improving the e-commerce platform at a fast rate. Each employee knows they have the power to directly impact and improve the customer experience and is encouraged to do so.

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