Last week I had to buy a new pair of running shoes. Because I do run three times per week, I need to buy regularly new shoes. After a certain mileage the cushioning is not working properly anymore. Most of the time a starting pain in my Achilles heal is the right indicator…
I do go to a specialized shop called Run2Day. They are an example of services which are really designed to fit the customer. First you have to show your old shoes, so they can see how your usage is. Then you have to run a short distance, which is recorded on video. Once that analysis is done, they know what your needs are. Of course they have asked you how many tomes you run and what the distance is. Then they w some models which are suitable for your style. You try them on and you can even run with them outside of the shop to really test how they feel. If needed you can try on other pairs to match them. If you have made a choice, they tape you again on the video camera to see whether you get the right support from the shoe. Finally you make your choice, where you feel quite comfortable with, as you tested the shoes thoroughly.
The person who is helping you is always a professional runner. So he/she knows all about running and all about the shoes. That also gives you a comfortable feeling. They act as a fellow runner, rather than as a salesperson.
This shop and the way the customers are being services is an example of service design with the customer in mind. The customer is the starting point and the endpoint. They have taken much effort to really understand what a customer needs. By doing so they exceed your expectations. Customer involvement is an integral part of their service design and service delivery.