How to Make the Most of Brick-And-Mortar During the Holidays
Predictions of a looming recession don’t seem likely to hinder holiday shopping this year. Despite what some call an ‘unprecedented uncertainty’, analysts say that holiday shopping will increase manifold compared to the last year. This is the time for brick-and-mortar retailers to capitalize on their physical stores and bring in extra profits even as giants like Amazon continue to eat into their market share.
According to Avionos research, 58 percent of consumers are most likely to buy expensive items like furniture or electronics from a store. This shows that customers often like to physically see and feel the product before spending on them. In-store promotions during events like Black Friday can drive customers to the store.
Creating a branded online-to-offline, seamless experience isn’t always easy, and retailers will need to think creatively to engage with their customers. Investing in experiences that are memorable is vital in redefining the relationship with the customer which otherwise will remain purely transactional.
There are a few tips to consider to make the most of your brick-and-mortar:
Promote Fast Fulfillment
For customers who are still reluctant to face the crowd, make it as convenient as possible for them to pick up items in-store with services such as buy-online-pickup-in-store (BOPIS). Don’t make them trudge through the back of a crowded store to pick up their order. Designate a clear spot in front of customers so that they can get in and out quickly. Create quick shopping bins for a customer to add to their order by the pick-up.
Additionally, anticipate large numbers of shoppers and be proactive. Deploy staffers adequately to reduce the line size and take steps to keep the line moving. For example, designate an employee to keep a watch on customers lines to make sure they move as quickly as possible.
Create Entertaining Holiday Shopping Experiences
While Thanksgiving and Black Friday shopping events are family traditions for some, others scoff at the idea of waiting in long lines and fighting the crowds. Attract reluctant customers by making these shopping events fun. Improve customer experience and make shopping more like a party. Prevent brawls over the cheapest flat-screen TVs.
For example, consider hosting raffles and giveaways to customers who show up in-store on Black Friday. Freebies like hot chocolate can be provided for those who woke up early to visit your store. You could also offer special perks like a free makeover for a beauty retailer, or a stylist on-hand to complete the outfit to drum up excitement about your brands.
Nudge Customers Toward Impulse Purchases
This Black Friday, brands can work on shoppers’ likelihood to engage impulse purchases. Avionos research has found out that 58 percent of consumers are likely to make unplanned purchases in physical stores. If customers show up at stores, they’re more likely to purchase products they otherwise wouldn’t consider while searching online.
Another easy way, of course, is offering discounts. For example, offer $25 off for customers who spend a minimum of $200 in-store. Meijer takes this concept further by allowing customers to connect to in-store wifi and receive hyper-localized deals that other online shoppers wouldn’t be able to see. Customers who arrive with lack of clarity on the best deals are more likely to buy products they didn’t plan to purchase.
You can’t afford to miss out on consumer spending during the holidays, especially during the times of economic uncertainties. While customers gravitate toward online shopping this season, they still crave for the in-store experience. Brick-and-mortar retailers have a different kind of advantage during the holidays, especially with the big-ticket purchases. Don’t waste the opportunity, use technology to boost this advantage by merging the online and in-store experience together. Happy Selling!