Hong Kong,
22
October
2015
|
10:45
Asia/Hong_Kong

Proximity is key to charming customers

72% Hong Kong business professionals believe they need to stay close to customers to increase sales and understand markets better

 

Hong Kong, 22 October, 2015 – The latest research by global workplace provider Regus reveals that physical proximity to customers is key to businesses success. It highlights the fact that locations closer to customers bring bumper benefits including more sales and increased visibility.

 

The study, canvassing over 44,000 people from more than 100 different countries, including 365 respondents in Hong Kong, found that operating out of locations closer to their customers helps firms resolve issues faster (74%) and 71% said that customer proximity improves customer satisfaction and retention rates. 63% of respondents also believe that firms with local offices understand customers and markets better because they are steeped in the local culture.

 

The results from Hong Kong respondents were even more positive, with 82% feeling that operating out of locations closer to their customers can help boost brand visibility, 78% believe they can respond to customers’ enquiries more rapidly and effectively and 75% agreeing that firms with local offices understand customers and markets better and can improve customer retention rate.

 

Statistics on the benefits of being physically close to customers and prospects:

 

Global Ave

HK

Mainland China

Japan

S’pore

South

Korea

 1. Boost sales

67%

72%

65%

58%

74%

69%

 2. Improve customer retention rates

71%

75%

74%

73%

74%

80%

 3. Improve customer satisfaction

71%

73%

73%

76%

78%

83%

 4. Respond to customer problems more rapidly and effectively

74%

78%

84%

82%

81%

85%

 5. Chase up customer payments

37%

46%

48%

41%

52%

44%

 6. Understand customers and markets better

63%

75%

81%

61%

73%

69%

 7. Improve our marketing effectiveness

63%

68%

84%

64%

71%

69%

 8. Develop better products

40%

48%

60%

44%

49%

39%

 9. Strike better deals with suppliers

46%

52%

66%

57%

53%

40%

 10. Increase our visibility

74%

82%

70%

65%

83%

57%

 11. Attract and retain top local talent

64%

62%

68%

54%

59%

48%

 12. Improve productivity

65%

68%

80%

59%

77%

65%

 (Source: Regus survey, 2014)

The survey also identified key drivers that make companies want to setting up offices close to customers. Hong Kong respondents believed that the top three are: Increasing demand for better work-life balance (67%), the need to create an agile organisation that can respond to ever-changing market (36%), increasing demand from employees to work closer to home (35%).

Additional statistics on the key drivers of flexible workings:

 

Global Ave

HK

Mainland

China

Japan

S’pore

South

Korea

 1. Increasing demand to work closer to home by employees

48%

35%

44%

35%

44%

23%

 2. Increasing demand for better work-life balance

61%

67%

53%

57%

50%

50%

 3. Rising cost of commuting

32%

23%

35%

11%

23%

15%

 4. Rising cost of urban housing

16%

20%

29%

13%

14%

10%

 5. Desire to attract staff from a wider talent pool

29%

33%

30%

32%

33%

24%

 6. Need to create an agile organisation that can meet changing market demands

44%

36%

44%

39%

46%

45%

 7. Reduce leasehold property under-occupancy

17%

22%

27%

4%

22%

17%

 8. Comply with best-practice employee flexibility standards

31%

29%

47%

34%

30%

33%

(Source: Regus survey, 2014)

 

"Setting up in locations closer to customers or prospects can bring bumper benefits to both businesses and customers. This is especially true in cities like Hong Kong where the market competition is fierce and the expectations are high among customers for speedy delivery, fast response and quick actions from businesses. Firms are able to respond faster when there is a problem, and get it solved straight away, for example. As a result, improved customer care leads to happier customers and better retention rates," said John Wright, CEO of Asia-Pacific at Regus.

 

"By setting up locations closer to customers' firms not only increase visibility, but also gain a clearer view of their markets. A deeper understanding of the local environment can also lead to improved marketing effectiveness, but it's not just customers that are more satisfied: branching out can also help widen the talent pool as firms attract staff in different areas and capitalise on their knowledge and experience," he added.

 

Boilerplate

 

About Regus

Regus is the global workplace provider.

 

Its network of more than 2,500 locations in 106 countries and 900 cities provides convenient, high-quality, fully serviced spaces for people to work, whether for a few minutes or a few years. Companies like Google, Toshiba and GlaxoSmithKline choose Regus so that they can work flexibly and make their businesses more successful.

 

The key to flexible working is convenience and so Regus is opening wherever its 2.1 million members want support - city centres, suburban districts, shopping centres and retail outlets, railway stations, motorway service stations and even community centres.

 

Founded in Brussels, Belgium, in 1989, Regus is based in Luxembourg and listed on the London Stock Exchange. For more information, please visit: www.regus.com.hk