Every retail business can do with a shake up every now and then. This is especially true in today’s retail climate where sales are flat.
While a good retail business will have a long term business plan, the shorter term shake up I propose in this article could be vital in the business achieving its sales numbers for this year.
It is easy to fall into a regular stride, doing the same things, and along the way losing momentum. Here are some tips designed to shake the business out of the usual, to find new opportunities and present a fresh face.
- Take a close look at your numbers. Compare the last 90 days of trade with the same 90 days of a year earlier. Look at revenue, unit sales, basked size (the number of items in each shopping basket) and basket revenue (dollars per sale). Use this information to learn about the parts of the business which needs focus.
- Drive change. Create a shortlist of changes to make in the areas of the business which need attention the most. It could be changing the location of items, changing pricing, buying differently or just refreshing the offer.
- Reinvent your counter. This is usually the work hub of any retail store. Give it a fresh look and feel, let your regular customers see that the business has changed.
- Write to your customers. Put together an offer designed to bring existing customer back into the store. Write to them with a couple of coupons which they can spend if they return in a short period of time. For the coupons to work the offers must be exclusive to them and genuinely compelling. Take care with the letter, make it personal and honest.
- Change the look of the business. From the store front through to the rear wall of the shop, make changes to displays, locations of impulse purchase lines and the most often bought items. Get regular customers looking for what they want. Get would sales team shaken by the change.
- Connect with a community event. Find a good local community event and offer sponsorship. Build a good holistic story around this and find a way to leverage your good work for publicity. Get everyone in the business as well as your suppliers supporting the event. While it may not seem core to the business, this type of community involvement is a great way to demonstrate your value to the local community and thereby drive customer traffic.
Shaking up your business for no reason other than wanting to shake it up is usually good for business. Embrace the opportunity with gusto and be sure to track the results.