It is a challenge for a lot of retailers these days to increase foot traffic. Even before all the quarantine and lockdown regulations were in place, more and more consumers are switching to digital platforms in making purchases.
Although 63 percent of shopping occasions usually start online, physical retail establishments are still necessary for businesses to thrive. On the part of consumers, physical stores are still necessary, especially in making major purchases, like buying a furniture piece or an engagement ring.
According to statistics, while online shops and retail websites are the common sources of initial product awareness, physical shops are the second most popular source of awareness.
Since physical stores bank so much on foot traffic these days to increase sales, here are some helpful ideas for bringing more customers to your store.
Keep Your Storefront Well-Maintained
You may have gotten used to how your storefront looks, but now is the best time to really take a closer look outside.
Are your windows dirty? Are the paint jobs peeling off? Does your lawn look dry so that it needs a sprinkler system installation? Answering these questions gives you a clearer view of how you can improve your store’s facade.
A neat and attractive storefront undeniably attracts customers. Customers are less likely to enter stores that look unkempt and in disarray from the outside.
What you and your staff can do is create a schedule of daily tasks to keep your storefront well-maintained. These include wiping or washing the windows, sweeping the ground, repainting the walls, or fixing the door.
Make Customers Feel Like Home
When you have customers, do not miss such opportunities to talk to them. Engaging them in a more personal and interactive in-store shopping experience helps them realize how valuable in-store purchases are rather than shopping online.
These are some nifty ideas on how you can foster a more personalized shopping experience for your customers:
- Gather customers’ data for you to so send newsletter and updates
- Offer some swags and free samples
- Provide one-on-one service
- Showcase your store’s reward program
If you can communicate effectively and efficiently how beneficial in-store shopping is compared to online, customers are likely to return to your stores again because of the positive experience.
One study shows that about 40 percent of consumers are likely to do business again with retailers who would go the extra mile to make customers feel at home.
Apart from that, customers who have had a positive experience shopping at your physical store will likely recommend your business to the people they know. And in this social media age, they would even post about their positive experience on their profiles, giving you a free positive PR.
It is shown that one single happy customer, on average, will tell 9 family members and friends of your business.
On the other hand, offering the worst customer experience possible means a loss of earning potential. Almost half of the consumers who experience poor customer service are likely to switch to competitors.
Create Photo Opportunities
Modern-day consumers, particularly younger Millennials, are fond of photo opportunities. If you look at how social media posts are these days, you will see how these younger consumers will go to great lengths for that perfect Instagrammable moment.
With this in mind, one way to attract more younger customers to your store is to create photo opportunities in your location. You set up an Instagrammable wall or build a dedicated beautiful corner for these photo-op moments.
There are two benefits you can reap from this piece of advice. One, it gives you free online visibility and promotion. Two, it increases the chance of more people going into your store.
Spice up With Some Curbside Extras
It helps if you keep your physical store in line with the seasons. During the year, consumers shop for different various things. So, one way of gaining more foot traffic is to ensure that your retail business carries items that answer customers’ seasonal needs.
Whether it is Christmas, Halloween, Valentine’s Day, or St. Patrick’s Day, keep your store fresh and updated.
Leverage Google My Business
As mentioned, these days, younger consumers usually do online searches first before settling to buy a product or service in person.
Data has shown that over the years, there has been an increasing 500 percent growth of ‘near me’ searches along with ‘to buy’ or ‘can I buy.’
When you have your retail store registered with Google My Business (GMB), you increase your online presence and boost your foot traffic opportunities. So if you have not created a GMB profile yet, now is the time to do so. And remember, the more attractive and informative your GMB profile is, the more likely people will visit your store.
By implementing any of these suggestions, you are guaranteed to increase the foot traffic in your physical store and increase sales.