Why Technology Should Be On Your Market Agenda

Casual Living – September market is an energizing time for casual retail. This annual reinvigoration is an opportunity to consider your business objectives outside of your merchandising strategy. We live in an experience economy where customer perception of your brand as a whole drives revenue.

The question becomes, how do you want your business to make customers feel? A starting point is to define the adjectives you want associated with your brand. What words would you want to stand out in an online review? Convenient, personal, inviting and expert come to mind.

Now, take this exercise a step further by evaluating these key moments in your business’ experience:

  1. How much do you know about the customer who walks into your door?

Did you know that data is more valuable than oil? Digitalist notes, “Retailers can no longer afford to guess what customers want. They need to own and maintain complete, direct control of their data. Doing so opens opportunity to derive predictive insights on consumer behavior, interest trends and potential operational improvements.”

  1. How seamless is your sales process in store?

Mobile plays an important role on the showroom floor. Expedient checkout processes and access to inventory knowledge via mobile are key ways to use this tech to your advantage.

  1. If a customer leaves without buying, can you save the sale?

It’s tough work to get a new customer in the door, so the last thing you want is to let that foot traffic go without purchasing. Sometimes customers really do need to sleep on things. Instead of letting the decision pass, ensure they leave with a cart they can easily complete online. Encourage your sales team to do so by giving them credit for the online order. A consumer study conducted by Boston Retail Partners showed the prevalence of showrooming. “Forty-seven percent of consumers have shopped in a store and purchased online or via mobile.” If it’s not easy for your customer to complete their shopping cart online, your chance of closing that sale diminishes.

  1. After a customer purchases, what happens next?

Customers should be considered as ongoing relationships at all points on their path to purchase. Technology is key to keeping track of your customers’ lifecycles and how your team can continue personalized engagement to increase lifetime value. Highlight a customer’s design project on your social media page, and offer them an incentive for doing so. This boosts their morale while opening the door for their next visit.

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