Retail is starting to come full circle. Even as online sales continue to command a greater percentage of consumer purchases, online retailers like Amazon and Alibaba have started to invest in brick-and-mortar stores. If you are a small brick-and-mortar retailer, it's more important than ever to properly market your physical store. Here are some of the most popular and effective tasks recommended by marketers.
Keep accurate information online.
Even people who shop in physical stores turn to the internet. They look for contact information like phone numbers and directions to the store. Ensuring that information is current across all directories keeps you relevant. With thousands of directories to track, you may want to consider a marketing automation program that monitors directories, alerts you to mistakes and sends corrections. Otherwise, check the most common directories like Yelp and Google regularly, especially when you change anything.
Have an online catalog.
More than half of shoppers use online media to pre-shop. Once in the store, people go online to compare prices and check reviews. Even if you don't sell online, having your catalog on your website with good keywords may draw others to your store, especially if you undersell the competition.
Use loss leaders and bundles.
Deeply discounting a product to draw people into your store or bundling a popular product with a less popular one and discounting the package provide the lure of a deal, the urgency of limitation and the expectation of exclusivity.
Make an awesome window display.
Most retail marketing experts agree that an enticing window display is the best way to draw in street customers. Highlight your best products, including one big draw (like 50 percent off items or bundles). Reflect your store's unique style. A drab display loses the casual window shopper who might buy on impulse.
Seminars, fashion shows, book signings and other events are one area where online venues can't compete. Some experts suggest monthly events, but not all need to be heavily planned. Also, work to convert events to sales. Your "Spring Into Fitness" seminar would generate more sales if the attendees got a discount that day on athletic wear, for example. You can also include one-day-only sales, limited availability items and online coupons to use in-store.
Create a shopping experience.
With so many products available in abundance from multiple sources, no one really needs to frequent a specific store. Therefore, to attract and keep customers, you need to make