If you’ve been keeping tabs on the e-commerce industry, you’ll know that e-commerce is growing at an extraordinary pace, resulting in Australian retailers increasing the customer experience they provide.
In a report by The NAB Online Retail Index Report, showed that online shopping increased by almost 10% in Australia in 2017, while in-store foot traffic only increased by 3%. Retailers can still hold their own against e-commerce store owners – to do that, they’ll have to improve their in-store experience, and provide an incentive for customers to purchase from them.
1. Packaging is everything
We’re very much visual creatures, and we love to see how items are packaged or put together. Ensuring your packaging is visually appealing will assist in enticing your consumers to make a purchase.
We also recommend that you offer boxes and gift-wrapping options, especially if you’re selling products that would make a good gift. Many people put off shopping for presents until the last minute, and when that happens, they’d rather make their purchase from a retail store rather than buy it online (and risk it is arriving late).
2. Go mobile with your POS system
A mobile POS is basically a smartphone, tablet, or other wireless device that can perform the functions of your cash register or POS terminal. There are plenty of retail stores in Australia that have already jumped on the mobile POS bandwagon.
What are the benefits of mobile POS systems?
First and foremost, they can help ease long queues at the cashier during peak periods. More specifically, your staff can attend to customers and process purchases with multiple POS devices, reducing the likelihood of a bottleneck.
On top of that, with mobile POS systems, you can offer to email your customers their receipts instead of printing them out. Currently, customers are increasingly favouring companies who exude corporate social responsibility (CSR).
To enhance this message, offering digital receipts is a great way of showing that you care. Last but not least, mobile POS systems allow you to easily collect and record your customers’ information, including their email addresses. This way, you can grow your email list, and keep your customers updated about the latest in-store promotions and deals.
3. Personalise experiences
Most retailers already know that personalisation is the way to go. If you can personalise your customer’s in-store experience, and offer them something that’s tailored to their needs, this increases the chances of a customer becoming a loyal fan.
4. Leverage social media
Here’s the thing: even though you’re working on your in-store experience, this doesn’t mean that you have to restrict yourself to offline elements. We recommend harnessing the power of social media in order to make your in-store experience more compelling.
5. Hold events
Many retailers steer clear of holding events because they take a lot of effort to organise, and revenue can be difficult to gauge. But the goal of holding an event in your store isn’t to generate short-term sales; instead, it’s to attract more visitors and foot traffic, and expose your brand to a wider audience.Even if these people don’t make a purchase immediately, your store will be on their radar, and they may pop by and buy something the next time you’re in the area. You can also use these events to collect email addresses, and build your social media following.
With e-Commerce going from strength to strength, retailers can’t afford to rest on their laurels, or be content with the status quo. Use these five tips to improve your in-store experience, so that you can compete with all the online stores out there!
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About The Australian Retailers Association
The ARA aims to ensure retail success by informing, protecting, advocating, educating and saving money for its 7,500 independent and national retail members throughout Australia. The ARA is passionate about supporting careers in Australian retail industry and secure skilled staff to ensure the longevity of Australian Retail. By implementing these service strategies into your business, your business will thrive amongst digital and bricks and mortar competitors. Service is key to the future success of retail and therefore offering a positive experience will ensure customer satisfaction, loyalty and the longevity of your business. Visit www.retail.org.au