What Customer Experiences do Starbucks and Amazon have in Common?


If you had to think of two companies that had things in common, Amazon and Starbucks probably wouldn’t be the two that you choose. One company sells delicious, steaming hot coffee, and the other sells everything, including the kitchen sink. At face value, the two companies couldn’t be more different.

However, when you take a closer look at the companies, there are actually some pretty startling similarities, many of which surround customer experience. These two industry-dominators, albeit from different industries, share some very similar attitudes to customer experience.

In part, the shared attitudes to customer experience explain just how the companies have skyrocketed to the positions they’re in today. After all, a company can’t survive without customers!

The Amazon and Starbucks Customer Experience

Amazon has spent years establishing itself as a household name, with services provided all over the world, and side services in everything from audio books to on-demand streaming and movie reviews. Starbucks on the other hand, is focused primarily on coffee, but that’s not to say that the business doesn’t have an extensive reach.

As of 2017, there were 27,339 Starbucks stores in the world, operating in 76 different countries. Both companies have a strong ethos surrounding customer experience, but where do the lines cross and these experiences become eerily similar?

Here are four areas of customer experience, that Amazon and Starbucks have both excelled in:

Atmosphere – When you go into a Starbucks store, you’re greeted by a welcoming atmosphere. The employees are friendly, and happy to serve. This is a key part of the Starbucks customer experience plan – ensuring that employee training and satisfaction are always a priority. With Amazon, the experience is very different, but no less effective. When you visit the Amazon webpage, everything is explained, easy to find, and information is provided at a glance – creating a positive atmosphere where you don’t need to search for what you need.

Artificial Intelligence – Amazon have not been shy about launching into the world of artificial intelligence in order to improve overall customer experience. The introduction of Alexa, for example, has started to revolutionise the way that customers experience brand interactions, shopping, and information gathering. It may come as a surprise, but Starbucks have shifted towards an artificial intelligence mindset as well. The company have formulated key plans to better connect with their customers and improve experience through artificial intelligence.


Customer Surveys – It won’t come as much of a shock that these two customer experience goliaths, have fully utilised the goliath of customer experience tools – surveys. From the Starbucks satisfaction survey to Amazon customer survey emails, if you have ever interacted with these brands, then you’ve likely received a survey at one point or another. So, what makes surveys so important?

Surveys give a company feedback and allow a brand to learn what they need to do to stay on top of their game. Amazon and Starbucks have both made full benefit of this tool in various ways. In fact, most companies jump on board the survey train, with software services like Typeform and Typeform alternatives making online surveys incredibly easy.

Continuity – When you buy something from Amazon, you get the same experience or thereabouts, every single time. You find the goods you want, put them in your basket, and then pay for them. When you go to Starbucks, you see the same branded cups, get the same atmosphere, and generally, the same drink options. Continuity tells customers what to expect from a brand, and then ensures that it’s always delivered. By embracing continuity, both Starbucks and Amazon have moulded themselves into a brand that can be trusted.

These two companies may be at completely different ends of the business world, but they have one vital thing in common – they know how to treat customers right.


About Author

Ben is a follower of Christ, a rabid computer geek, small business owner, and breaker of things. He is married way above his station in life and has three wonderful children who have made driving him insane their mission in life.

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