Retail Business Success for 2016 and Beyond
Make More Money in Your Business
Happy New Year (Hopefully)

With all the current uncertainty in the world, running a retail business these days takes nerves of steel.  Now more than ever, retail merchants, whether in a brick-and-mortar store, on-line, at festivals, or in specialty locations like hospital gifts shops and amusement park shops, need to keep coming up with more inventive ways to attract new customers and keep existing customers coming back for more.
This year, the Nielson ratings & research company has these suggestions for retailers:
  • Go Micro or go Macro
    You either have to be a "big box" store, or you MUST specialize in something your customer CAN'T get at Target, Walmart, Macy's etc.

  • Be ENTERTAINING (and hospitable)
    Ok, ok, sometimes it feels like customers want the sun, moon and stars, then they walk out of your booth or store without buying anything. Believe me, we KNOW how it feels. So, here's an idea that won't cost you a bundle and goes a long way toward entertaining and engaging your customers: FEED YOUR CUSTOMERS Serve tea or coffee in your shop or booth, and a bowl of (wrapped) candy doesn't hurt either. If you can afford something a little more extravagant, then do it--just don't run afoul of the health requirements in your city.

  • Accommodate, accommodate, accommodate Is it EASY to enter your store? Is it EASY for people to find things? Do you have 1 or 2 extra chairs in convenient places so shoppers can park their (bored) spouses? Think about the amenities that you would like to have when you're shopping - then give them to your customers!

  • Is your storefront clean and welcoming? Does it do you proud? You'd be surprised at the messy stores & festival booths we've seen. Sweep off the sidewalk in front of your store, and have several attractive (not dirty) trash containers for people to use inside the store, as well as a larger container outside the front door (if your landlord & city regulations allow).

    Are you aisles wide enough for 2 large people to walk down them? You'd be surprised at the big stores that seem to think people are all size 2. They're not!

  • Remember, no man (and no business) is an island. You probably offer products or services that would blend well with complementary businesses. For example: You sell Day Of the Dead statues, and there's a Mexican restaurant nearby. Exchange "counter space" between your business and the restaurant's for business cards or flyers. Or, perhaps there's a Farmers' Market in your town with vendors selling organic food & you sell books on organic cooking. Try networking with these vendors to place their booth info in your store and your store info in their booths. The possibilities are endless!

Blessings and Best of Luck for 2016
Suzanne & Steve at Mandarava

 

 

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