The closure of physical retail, restaurant and service locations has become a common event in recent years, with the retail sector alone losing an estimated 100 million square feet-plus of space over the last year. These closures, however, continue to serve as a reminder to businesses that the expectations of consumers are constantly changing.
The global e-commerce sector, which is estimated to reach $3.4 trillion in the upcoming year, has certainly played a role in the traditional physical location landscape. Luckily, you don't have to see all of these changes as a threat to your physical businesses. Instead, it's time to change your tactics and take advantage of a multi-pronged marketing approach that taps into the connectivity of today's consumer and helps to increase foot traffic at the same time.
Add options to buy online, pick up in the store
Having and marketing a buy online, pick up in your location service will bring people in, and it's usually not too difficult to set up. This service gives your customers more convenience and control when they are making a purchase or ordering from you, and it can free up time and money for your shipping department. Just having it, however, isn't enough; you'll need to get the word out there via advertising. If your budget is limited, using social media is a low-cost or free way to get the ball rolling once you have this set up on your website.
Get more personal
Your online real estate should drive sales in your location, so use every pixel on your customers' screens to better serve them and your store. Having promotions in-store, even if they are just advertised through email, invites your customers to walk through the door and helps build brand loyalty. Keep in mind that customers these days are looking for a more personalized approach, so generalized marketing isn't the right way to go here. Use your customer insight data to drive your promotions and the content and ways you use to reach consumers.
If you are not gathering any data on your customers yet, now is the time to start. Some marketing tools, such as the reward program CatchCoin, collect customer data as part of their campaigns, and you can use this to gain insight into what your target audience responds to. You can use this invaluable feedback to tweak campaigns for more success because you'll have a better idea of what works and what doesn't.
Go more mobile
Your customers are on their phones, so that's where you need to be, too. Any time they spend on your website that translates into a positive experience helps capture their attention, which isn't easy to do these days among all the distractions. Customers are often on the go, so their devices are almost always with them and at the ready. When your website isn't optimized for mobile users, you risk losing out on the foot traffic that it could generate. If people can't easily bring up and navigate your website on their phones, they're simply not going to stop into your store. Instead, they'll head over to the store whose website worked well for them and answered all of their questions. It's also important to keep in mind that not all phones are the same, so your website needs to work properly across more than one mobile operating system.
Start rewarding shoppers
People are more cost-conscious than ever these days, and they are increasingly on the hunt for sales, promos and deals. Rewards have become popular tools to increase foot traffic in a location because they create excitement and make customers feel more valued by a business. While some reward programs can be too costly or confusing to set up, especially if your marketing budget is tight, apps like CatchCoin are easy and completely under your control.
With CatchCoin, all you have to do is register your business on the user-friendly platform, input information about your target market, and schedule a campaign completely on your own terms. You can add a reward for users who submit a proof of purchase from your business to get more people through your doors. A simple campaign, such as a $1 reward per purchase, can increase your sales and your foot traffic without breaking the bank.
As more and more people shop online, the physical location landscape will continue to shift, and business will need to take different approaches to keep customers coming back in for more. This isn't the end of the physical locations; people will still to come into a shop to browse sometimes or when they need something and can't wait for delivery. To make sure those very same people come to your business, you will need to take action by boosting your mobile presence, personalizing your sales approach, and rewarding shoppers using easy and low-cost options like CatchCoin.