The purpose that businesses work towards is bringing in more customers and meeting the sales target. The thing that holds great importance is that the competition out there is fierce and getting results counts. Some errors could be made from your side as certain forces are beyond your control, so it is not a big deal if you are experiencing a slump in sales because everyone does. As you have already landed on our page, it is quite apparent that you are struggling in increasing your sales and now you are seeking help.
If the cash register is not ringing, there’s definitely a flaw that you are overlooking. Your smart move should be to find out what’s keeping the customers away and how you can pull them towards your brand. Worried? Don’t be because successful retailers aren’t more talented or intelligent than you are. They have simply learned from their mistakes and evolved their way of doing business. To guide you in the right direction, we have compiled 6 ways via which you and your staff can improve the sales and come out of those slow days.
Retail is becoming more of a task for employees than interacting with the customers. Instead, it should be the other way around. What is happening in the present scenario is that the employees are busy completing a task, ignoring the shoppers and looking at each other for help. When such a thing happens, the customer prefers leaving the store than wait for someone to come and assist them. As soon as their out of your shop, you lose a sale and a customer.
If you wish to increase the sales, your employees and manager should be trained well to keep customers first before anything else. Without a doubt they should complete the work at hand but if a new customer comes in, either he or some other employee should be on his feet to take care of the new one. The manager should also keep a close eye on everything that is happening in the store. In case a customer is not satisfied and is about to leave, the manager should step in and turn the conversation around. Instant attention makes customers feel special and cared for. They feel important and this air helps in closing a sale.
Whenever something is happening at the store or outside, people get pulled towards it. This is a natural instinct that customers can’t get away with. If you are thinking that is an old idea, well, yes it is. This method has been around since the retail came into play but every time it has proven to be a successful method. You attract even those who have never been to your store or the product that you are offering isn’t really something they want. But when you take things outside the store and create hype, people are overtaken by an instinct to instantly buy the thing before it slips off from their hands. So even if they don’t need that product, they still might consider buying it.
Stuff outside the store will draw attention and people will at least come to take a look. This will create traffic outside your store and those who are not interested will also come and stop by. Whether they buy something or not, you are grabbing their attention and that’s what it is all about sometimes in order to increase sales.
Personalise The Stuff
People will pay more attention to the products and services you are offering when they are of relevance to them. Like when we hear our name, the brain automatically responds to it. Same happens when we personalise the things that the customer is looking for.
If you are a retail store owner, educate and train your employees to ask straight forward questions to the customers and provide them with what they are looking for. If you don’t have that particular product that’s okay but it doesn’t mean that you can’t offer them an alternate option. Turn around the conversation in your favor and pitch for the product that you have. Make them realise that choosing an alternate option won’t make much of a difference and they will have what they want. That way it would be easy to close a deal. Personalisation is the key.
Online retailers can also make use of this method. There is definitely no personal contact between the customer and employee on the web but you can still make it happen by creating filter options or a menu bar that categories the products in the right manner. For example, if your eCommerce website has everything – from electronics to shoes to apparels, a menu bar will be a great option. There you can list products under specified categories such as Electronics, home appliances, clothes, footwear, accessories etc., so that whenever a visitor comes to your website, he/she wish to buy a laptop, they can simply click on the electronics section and likewise. When a lot of products are scattered across the site without any categories, the customer has to dig in to find the product they want. This is a task for them and makes them less interested to buy that particular thing from your site. It is vital that you engage the customers in the right manner.
Create The Illusion Of Scarcity
This method is one of the most popular ones and every retailer will swear by it. Why not, it has been time tested and a proven technique that definitely helps in increasing the sale. When there’s a scarcity of a particular product, people tend to value it more and try to grab it sooner than others. Businessmen around the world use this technique to sell their products faster.
Offline retailers can put up hoardings, standees or dangler to tell people in and out of the store that their products are available on a discounted rate and selling fast. The employees can also inform the visitors about the same. As soon as your patrons hear this, they will be more than willing to buy the product. Same happens online as well. Any product that is listed as selling fast or limited units available, capture the attention of the shoppers. The “fear of missing out” triggers the shoppers as a survival instinct that makes them buy something quickly without thinking much.
Create An Event
Customers love when we create some competition or event. Through challenges or games, they feel happy, elated and competitive to indulge more, earn more points and win something good. On the other hand, through an event (especially with some social cause) makes them feel responsible towards their community and that’s what attracts them. Through events, businesses add a pinch of spice in the mundane lives of their customers.
You can learn something from one of the most famous eCommerce apparel site Myntra. The reason why they are so popular is that they regularly indulge their patrons into something interesting, one of them being their twice a year “End Of Reason Sale”. Those who are familiar with this site will already know what we are talking about but those who don’t, let us explain what makes them so special. Every year they organize a special sale in which customers can play some games to win points that they can utilize when shopping during the sale period. This way the site grabs attention and the customers are happy playing games and winning discounts more than the others.
Another famous sale that they organize is “Myntra Fashion Upgrade” in association with an NGO – Goonj. Via this particular sale, they urge their customers to give up the clothes that they don’t wear and earn points while doing the same. These points can be used while buying apparels from their site. When the clothes will be delivered, the patrons have to give their old clothes to the delivery guy that after being collected is given to the NGO that works for the betterment of less fortunate people.
The point here is that organizing such events makes the customers happy, thus increasing sales and goodwill. This method can be applied by offline retailers too.
Create A Loyalty Program
Customers’ happiness is what should be the sole purpose of any retailer whether they are selling their goods online or offline. When the patrons are happy they will automatically come back to buy more products or services from you. Doesn’t sound like a bad deal, right?
Now, the question of importance here is how to keep the customers happy? It is not much of a task when you know what they want and what you need to do for them. Structuring a loyalty/ rewards program is one of the best ways to bring customers back, wanting for more. At the same time, you are also awarding their loyalty towards your brand. It is a tool for retailers to hold on to their customers in the most effective way. While you are at it, keep customers’ preferences, likes and dislikes in mind. The whole point of starting a loyalty program is to please the patrons and that’s what your sole inspiration should be when you are creating it.
You have walked through 6 great ideas that can help both online and offline retailers. Pick few that you think will best suit your type of business and help in achieving the targeted numbers. Love them, pamper them, given them gifts – whatever you do make sure that your patrons are happy. Once you are able to achieve that, your sales will stay up and steady. It’s time to do things that matter to get the sales up and stay ahead of the competition.