Holiday shopping season is well under way, and so far, it has been a challenging one for many retailers.
Whether sales are booming or you’re having a hard time moving product, Footwear News has three tips that could provide a solid nudge.
This may seem like a no-brainer, but many companies struggle to find the sweet spot of great product and reasonable pricing.
“Consumers want that balance of value where quality and price meet,” said Ryan Rose, director of business development at consulting firm Clutch. “They want the best brands, but they don’t always want to pay full price. They will sometimes be price-sensitive and price-driven.”
With the holidays being a particularly promotional time of year, consumers have come to expect discounts and deals when they shop during the season. And the post-recession consumer is especially bargain-oriented.
That doesn’t mean you have to drastically slash prices in unison with the holiday melee. Rose says there are lots of unique ways to add value to the shopping experience in lieu of heavy discounting.
“What we’re seeing from the premiere brands and retailers we’re working with is that they’re finding elegant ways, like more personalized promotions and loyalty-rewards programs, as opposed to heavy discounting and diluting the brand,” Rose said.
Have What They Need When They Need It
In the rush of holiday shopping, who wants to waste time visiting a retailer that is almost always out of stock on all the good stuff?
Don’t allow your store or online business to earn a reputation for poor supply-chain management.
“[People] want to know you’ll have their size in the style they like and through the channel they’re engaging with,” Rose explained.
In other words, do what it takes to tighten up your inventory management and learn which channels (brick-and-mortar, online, mobile) work best for your business.
Research your core customer, sift through market data and be hyper-aware of what does and doesn’t sell.
Communicate, Communicate, Communicate
Speaking of knowing your customer, it’s equally important to engage with them so they feel a connection with you that goes beyond a transactional relationship.
“The more I know about you as a consumer — how you like to buy, how much you like to spend, the size [you wear] and the styles you’re into — [the more] I can tailor my communication and engagement with you as a consumer,” Rose explained.
Social media is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to build and nurture a bond with consumers. In stores, having helpful, friendly associates can also create a familial atmosphere that engages shoppers and makes them more comfortable spending their hard-earned money.
And, of course, traditional advertising creates awareness of sales, promotions and special events that your business is hosting.