It is important for a retail store to form a strategy to promote its goods and services and reach the right set of customers — the primary objective of the retail strategies to increase sales as well as customer satisfaction equally.
Generally speaking, a retail plan is dependent on a lot of factors like products the store location of the store nature of customers and other multiple external factors like competition, physical and political restraints, seasonality, etc.
It is crucial that one considers all of these factors while planning and deciding the retail strategy.
Factors to consider while designing a retail strategy
While designing and retail strategy, it is important to consider many factors which influence the retail business. The retailer should consider these factors keep in mind the cell project and then design the retail strategy.
Although retail strategy would be different for different retailers near is a common guideline that is followed by almost all retailers while designing a successful retail sales strategy are as follows:
#1 Know thy customers
Almost every retailer would agree with the fact that knowing the customer is the foremost important factor for designing the retail strategy.
The customer is the one who is going to purchase the material which is why knowing the customer would mean knowing the likes and dislikes of the customer the preferences and tastes of different types of customers and the current trends in the market.
E-commerce websites are much ahead as compared to brick and mortar store in this category. The retail store opens at a particular time and closes at a particular time and also the best of the service can be provided during the working hours the brick and mortar store fails to provide service after hours.
This is when e-commerce websites come into the picture you not only send reminders to the customer to buy a particular product when in stock but also show the products related to the ones that are browsed by the customer again and again to ensure that the customer buys the product.
E-commerce apps show related products to the ones that are selected by the customer and try to increase the span of choice of the customer. No matter what strategy the retailer employs, knowing the customer will always be a significantly important part.
#2 Get new and retain old
It is essential that the retailer retains the customers. With the use of advertising and marketing campaigns retailer can get new customers, but similarly, the focus should be equally on retaining the existing customers as well.
The existing customers important for repeat purchases, what is the new customers will be important from the point of view of the expansion of the business. Existing customers will form the base of the business, and the retailer has to look to grow beyond the base by capturing the new customers.
Different strategies can be used to track new customers by promoting on the website or associated with social media.
#3 Know your business
Knowing the retail business is also an important factor in designing the retail strategy. It is crucial that the retailer considered the nature of the business and the nature of the goods that are sold.
For example, the retail business of having vegetables and other perishable items is very different from the retail business of having grocery, which is also very different from the retail business of furniture.
All of these businesses require a different strategy, and the important part of this is to know the product and the business. Knowing the business also means knowing the story of the location and how the to impact that is on the customers.
Location plays a very crucial role in the retail business. More than 50% of the business depends on the location and the convenience of the customers, which is why the retail strategy should be designed by keeping the location and mind.
These sentences are not a problem in case of e-commerce websites which are available 24/7 at the convenience of the customers.
For them knowing the business would mean using the right marketing strategy and targeting the right set of customers. Customer targeting is the most important part in case of e-commerce retailers. Social media is the platform used by e-commerce websites in order to promote their products to the target audience.
#4 Know the competition
Retail store with multiple competitors in the neighborhood, and it is important that the retail store knows about its competition and the unique offerings of that competition.
The retailer should invest time in understanding the strategy of the competition and what is it that the competition is getting right so that the retailer can incorporate those changes in his own store.
The retailer himself also should try to get an edge over the competition by unique offerings over the competition. Focusing on services is another important strategy that the retailer should apply in order to have the edge over the competition since servicing the customers is the only differentiating factor which the retailer an employ.
In terms of service, the retailer can provide free home deliveries for assisting the customers with their purchases are specialized offers for the customers who regularly shop at the retailer for providing membership cards on membership points for privileged customers.
Retail strategies to boost sales
Multiple strategies adopted by multiple retailers in order to boost the volume of sales in the business. Although most of the retail businesses differ from each other more often than not, their employee the following common strategies in order to increase their sales.
The easiest way to promote yourself would be to partner with similar businesses. This store can achieve this by using different techniques like partnering with different retailers of different businesses in the same location who will provide a reference to that particular retailer when the customer walks to other retailers of different businesses.
The associate retailers with the direct customer to that particular retailer and he will get a new customer. Partnerships can also be done with different stores in a different area so that the customers are directed to the retailer.
This partnership can be mutually decided for paid depending on the terms of business. Every customer referral may be chargeable by the other retailers, or the retailer can return the favor by directing the customers to his reference when they ask for a product which the retailer does not have.
#2 Social media
The easiest way to reach a particular set of the targeted audience is social media.
With the help of social media, unwanted advertising expenses can be avoided, and only specifically filtered customers can be targeted, and the store can be positioned. Using Facebook has become very common to promote a business.
Facebook offers large exposure to multiple people in the neighborhood and with a customer is set of targeting an audience selection preferences in Facebook advertising it is easier and effective for an advertiser to promote his product or service or in case of the retailer is business.
Starting a facebook group is also not uncommon where the retailer can promote different offers and schemes that are running in order to pull the customers. Paid Facebook ads are also another retail sales strategy wherein the business can be promoted with minimum cost and reach a tremendously high number of audience.
Instagram these days is in the neck to neck competition with Facebook, and most of the businesses from fashion industry prefer Instagram over facebook in order to target their audience. With high-quality photos on Instagram, it is easy to promote the business to a particular set of audience.
Different tools from Instagram like using proper hashtags making different stories in the Instagram profile, help to promote the business effectively. Many businesses also use other social media like Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, and even Google PayPerClick campaigns in order to promote their retail businesses.
#3 Referral campaigns
The existing customers of a retail store can be asked to refer for new customer after which both the existing and referred customer will get a discount on a few products, or the retailer can also offer freebies. Referral campaigns proved to be successful because getting a new customer would be the job of the existing customer, whereas the retailer can focus only on strategies to retain the existing customer.
Referral campaigns are similar to word of mouth campaign which is promoting two different customers by the existing customers, but the difference is that in case of referral campaigns the customers get paid for every successful referral which is not the case in word of mouth campaign.
#4 Instore advertising
Many retail stores have fantastic advertising inside the store, which instantly converts walk-in customers. These stores utilize their windows with large displays of the products highlighting offers and the best of their stuff so that it attracts the window shoppers.
Window advertising is seen commonly in tourist places where the tourists are unaware of the local products, and the store can help themselves promote with window advertising. Part of in-store advertising is also to have multiple variations of the same product which will cater and be to the liking of most of the customers.
Using merchandise which matches the products is also seen in many stores and can be used as a strategy. Use of bright lighting, bright interiors which compliment the store and the products can help in faster conversion of the customers.