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5 ways to build an in-store ecosystem that keeps customers coming back

5 ways to build an in-store ecosystem that keeps customers coming back

A business’ brick-and-mortar location should be just as much a part of the brand as the logo. But, turning the intangible ideas that make up your brand into a tactile retail experience is no easy task. Here’s what the experts suggest to help turn your store into an experience that reflects your brand.

Appeal to all of the senses.

The first thing that comes to mind in retail design is probably the way your store looks — but don’t ignore other senses. CEO of Delta Global, a packaging company, Robert Lockyer suggests creating an experience that targets multiple senses. If you create a luxury look, but your store smells like commercial cleaning products, the ecosystem doesn’t feel complete. Think of smell, touch, and sound as well as sight. And in some cases, even taste where appropriate.

Create the feel of a treasure hunt.

Finding a deal on a hard-to-find item feels akin to finding treasure — and that’s something that could drive more customers to your store, suggests Vend HQ. How do you create that treasure hunt feel? With limited edition items and rotating products. Frequently adjusting some products — if it makes sense for your brand — can keep frequent customers entertained as well.

Create a layout with flow.

Have you ever left a store frustrated because you couldn’t actually find what you were looking for? Layout is important when creating a positive ins-tore ecosystem. Snap Retail suggests creating a layout that flows, where navigating is almost an instinct and products are well-organised. Creating aisles that are clear of clutter also helps.

Get creative with modern technology.

Technology too, can help add to the overall feel of your brand, even in-store. Some stores have integrated tablets in store to help find products or learn about products, while others allow you to check out on a tablet, or integrate large screens with content into the design. Brainstorm ways that technology could enhance the in-store experience for your brand.

Keep prioritising employees.

A great store design means nothing if customers keep leaving because of poor customer service. The people inside your store are part of the ecosystem too. Make sure employees are properly trained and offer incentives to employees that offer the best customer service. Also, make sure your employees are updated with any store changes, so they can easily help with new layouts or using new in-store technology.

The in-store environment is just as much of a reflection on your brand as the sign out front. Make sure that in-store environment is sending the right message.

What will business look like after COVID-19? Industry experts share insights with you…

What will business look like after COVID-19? Industry experts share insights with you…

COVID-19 is both a global health crisis — and an economic one. Businesses were either forced to close or forced to quickly make serious changes in order to maintain customer and employee health. But as restrictions begin to lift, what will businesses look like? Industry experts and economic analysts are beginning to share insight into what business will look like after the pandemic…here we share those observations and thoughts with you…

Retail stores will look much different.

With social distancing in place, physical stores, like many of yours now, already look much different. But, analysts at Centric Software suggest that retail stores will take on more of a showroom function. The bulk of sales will remain online while stores serve as locations to see the product in person, discuss with your friendly team members if necessary. Analysts suggest more online stores will encourage customers to try items at home with changing return policies.

Contactless businesses will boom.

Even as the economy in some areas slowly reopens as positive cases dwindle, the threat of the virus hasn’t diminished. Fortune suggests that COVID-19 will spark a contactless economy, where e-commerce as well as other distanced businesses such as telemedicine will grow. As the analysts note, segments like e-commerce were already growing pre-pandemic, but the global health crisis accelerates that growth.

Digital innovation will become increasingly important.

Technology has already proven to be a differentiator among businesses, but Centric Software suggests the importance will only grow post-pandemic. Different technology, such as using virtual reality to try-before-you-buy become increasingly attractive in an age of social distancing, while others can help businesses get their products out faster.

Businesses models may be radically different.

The financial crisis will drive more businesses to strategise and make major changes in order to stay relevant, Fortune suggests. A simple tweak is not enough and many may need to make major overhauls to how your everyday business operates. That, in turn, could also play a role in where consumers spend their money.

Local businesses will see a major spike as restrictions are lifted.

Once shoppers are allowed to leave their homes, some businesses will likely see a spike in customer spending, suggests Centric Software. For some, COVID-19 has forced lower spending while they’ve still been able to earn an income working from home.

Overview: Think “laterally” re what you can do NOW to ensure you maximise the consumer spend when they recommence to retail shop and re-enter your retail space.

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