Lowe’s will ‘help’ best

Lowe's Canada plans to become the anti-big box store with a focus on superior customer service, its president Doug Robinson told the STORE retail conference in Toronto last month.

Lowe’s Canada plans to become the anti-big box store with a focus on superior customer service, its president Doug Robinson told the STORE retail conference in Toronto last month.

Robinson said he’s frequently asked why Lowe’s decided to enter Canada, a market saturated with home improvement retailers. He says Lowe’s sees an opportunity to snag consumers frustrated by the big box experience.

The chain will invest in thousands of hours of training each year and will forbid stocking after 10 a.m. to ensure all staffers are available to help customers. It will also install buttons consumers can push to get help from an associate within 60 seconds. ‘We think of [the buttons] as a failsafe, in case there isn’t a red vest in the aisle when the customer needs help,’ says Robinson.

Additionally, all Lowe’s staff will be trained to operate the cash registers. If at any time there are more than three customers in line, a cashier will call employees over to open up another till.

Five to six Lowe’s Canada stores should open by the end of fiscal ’07, all in or near Toronto. Its AOR is BBDO Retail in Windsor, Ont.