Bringing Sexy (Shopping) Back: Beating Online Retailers By Improving Your In-Store Experience

Online shopping is both a blessing and a curse. It’s a great thing for consumers, who can now shop at 3 am from their bathtubs if they really wanted to. But for the high street, not so much. More and more people are choosing to do their shopping online, with a significant effect on footfall in retail stores. How can shop owners buckle the trend and bring people back into their stores? Here are four ways you can boost your in-store experience.

Bringing Sexy (Shopping) Back: Beating Online Retailers By Improving Your In-Store Experience
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1. Deliver excellent customer service

Shops that offer great customer service will make a lasting impression on customers, who will be more likely to return to a shop that they have enjoyed visiting. Customer service is not just important for the customer experience, but for profits too. It’s estimated that £11 billion a year is lost in revenue from poor customer service. Make your customers feel valued and take the time to have a real conversation, offering them knowledge rather than just pushing sales. Word of mouth is a powerful tool, and you can make it great by displaying good customer service.

2. Make the shopping process easier

One of the major frustrations that shoppers face in a store is dealing with queues and waiting to speak to assistants. Stores that are cramped and get busy quickly could cause you problems, and you should always find solutions for preventing accidents in your store. While getting additional staff might be one solution, it’s not necessarily the most affordable option for your business. What you can do is come up with speedier checkout processes and bring in some self-service checkouts. Alternatively, brightening up your queuing space with some video or interactive screens can be one way to make queuing feel less like a task.

3. Develop an in-store loyalty scheme

Loyalty schemes are a fantastic way to offer your customers something in exchange for shopping with you. Whatever sort of retail business your run, offering a loyalty scheme could make your customers feel more valued and encourage them to return. Building up points to redeem against products or offering a discount for those signing up are just some of the ideas you can implement. Products like NFC tags are a popular way to store data that can be used for loyalty cards and more, giving your customers something easy to carry around with them. Hosting special events for your loyalty card holders is another way you can help them feel like they’re a part of something more exclusive.

4. Engage the five senses

The visual element of a shop is seen as the most important, but there are four other senses you could be using to appeal to customers. Creating the right soundtrack for your store, having elements they can try out and touch and even choosing appropriate scents for your shop can all help create a more immersive experience. Think of ways you can make your shop much more than just about shopping and you’ll turn your business into a far more appealing destination when people head out to the high street.

Making some changes to your shop is a great way to increase your footfall and offer a better experience for customers. Start thinking about how you can make your store a more exciting destination to compete with your online competition.