With the quick rise of ecommerce, a lot of people are now buying products using their smart devices. Less and less shoppers go to boutiques and malls. Because of this, new generation entrepreneurs think that brick and mortar stores are now a thing of the past.
No matter how popular ecommerce has become, more than 90 percent of economic activity is still happening in the real world. The majority of shoppers still go to traditional brick and mortar stores.
Brick and Mortar vs Online Stores
It’s true that e-commerce shopping is easier and more convenient. It saves a lot of time and you can do it wherever and whenever you want. You can do it while you’re stuck in traffic or when you’re just killing time. Plus, it gives you the chance to make discreet purchases.
But, let’s face it-- brick and mortar stores offer a different retail experience. They allow customers to touch and feel the products they want to purchase. They take the customers to an exciting world using superb lighting, creative displays, and captivating decors.
Brick and Mortar Shop Strategies That You Can Use To Grow Your Online Business
Even with the growing popularity of online shopping, a lot of shoppers still don’t trust most eCommerce shops. This is why a lot of shoppers still prefer to go to traditional stores.
If you want to continue to grow your customer base and bring your online business to new heights, you have to use the following brick and mortar strategies.
Brick & Mortar Strategy #1: Greet Your Customer
You can’t help but smile when a barista says “Welcome to Starbucks!” or when a store assistant cheerfully greets “Hi. Welcome to Zara!”.
Greeting the customer does more than build customer rapport. It creates an awesome customer experience. It also increases brand loyalty and customer satisfaction. As an online entrepreneur, you’ll have a hard time implementing this strategy and replicating this experience, but it’s not impossible. You can use a live chat app to greet the customers and assist them in navigating your website. You can also use this app to quickly answer customer inquiries. Investing in a live chat system not only increases customer satisfaction. It also improves your sales numbers and conversion rates.
Brick & Mortar Strategy #2: Be As Detailed As Possible
Carla needed a new dress for her friend’s wedding. She doesn’t have the time to go to the mall, so she ordered a beautiful floral summer dress online. The picture was amazing and it looks like it’s made of high quality materials.
Her order arrived on the day of the wedding. Carla was shocked when she learned that the dress is smaller than what she imagined. It barely fits her and it looks nothing like in the picture. It looks cheap and made of fabrics used for pillows and bed sheets.
A lot of customers go to a traditional brick and mortar store because it allows them to make more informed purchasing decisions. They can touch and feel the product. They can feel the product’s texture and could see how big it is. They’d know if it’s the right one for them.
If you want to replicate this brick and mortar experience, you have to be as detailed as possible. When you’re writing your product description, include details like product size, color, texture, and materials.
Let’s say you’re selling a backpack. When you’re writing your product display, you must answer the following questions:
How big is the backpack?
What it’s made of?
How many pockets does it have?
Does it have a laptop compartment? If yes. What kind and size of laptop fits in the bag?
You also need to post as many pictures as you can. Take pictures of your product from different angles. You can also create a product video so the customer can see how big it is.
Having detailed product description and honest pictures allows your customers to make an informed purchasing decision. This increases customer satisfaction and can inspire brand loyalty.
Brick & Mortar Strategy #3: Invest in Staff Development
Traditional stores offer great customer service because they invest in staff development. They conduct regular skill training. They also have various team building activities.
Keep in mind that the success of your business heavily depends on your employees. To achieve massive business growth, you must have a solid staff development program. You must give your employees regular constructive feedback and help them create a career development plan.
Having a solid staff development program increases your employees’ morale. It motivates them to do well at work. It increases productivity and efficiency. It also minimizes attrition and reduces employee turn-over.
Brick & Mortar Strategy #4: Engage Your Local Community
Havaianas is one of the most powerful and popular brands in the world. It is living proof that branding plays a huge role in business success.
In the 1990s, the Brazilian brand launched programs to support the Brazilian football team. They also sponsored outdoor activities in Sao Paulo. This popularized the flip-flop culture of Brazil.
To create a popular brand, you must engage your local community. Let’s say that you’re an online yoga mat company based in San Francisco. You can sponsor free yoga classes every Saturday. If you’re selling coffee beans, you can conduct local brewing classes. If you’re selling books, you can put up a local book club.
Engaging with your local community does not only increase your sales and brand popularity. It also encourages people to spread a good word about your brand. And, as you may already know, word-of-mouth remains to be the most powerful marketing strategy for both traditional and online stores.
Brick & Mortar Strategy #5: Create A Solid Loyalty Program
People around the world buy several cups of Starbucks coffee during the holiday season to get their hands on the most exclusive and talked-about planner. Starbucks’ annual planner giveaway is still one of the most brilliant marketing campaigns ever created.
Gratitude and appreciation attract customer loyalty and boosts sales. It also increases brand value. To increase your customer satisfaction and revenues, you must create a solid customer loyalty program.
Here are a few ideas that you can use:
Give out coupons and vouchers to repeat customers
Ask customers to become brand advocates in exchange of commissions
Offer promotional gifts for every purchase
It’s also a great idea to invest in loyalty software to easily implement your customer loyalty program.
Brick & Mortar Strategy #6: Personalize Your Recommendations
When you go to a McDonald’s store and buy a Big Mac, the attendant will ask you, “Do you want large fries or Coke to go with that?”. When you visit a Louis Vuitton store, the friendly store attendant would most likely tell you, “We have new designs right there, you might be interested in checking them out”.
Personalization is one of the best-kept success secrets of brick and mortar stores. Fortunately, with the rise of AI technologies, you can now gather customer data and make recommendations based on the customer’s taste, browse history, and previous purchases.
According to a study, more than eighty percent of online business increased their sales, revenues, and profits after launching a personalization campaign.
Brick & Mortar Strategy #7: Use Data to Create Operational, Inventory, and Marketing Decisions
Brick and mortar stores use software to track data, see what customers are buying, check employee performance, and monitor the movement of their inventory.
You might think that online entrepreneurs do a lot of data analysis. But, you’d be surprised to know that it’s not true. According to a survey, more than half of ecommerce entrepreneurs use their intuition and gut feel in making important business decisions.
To grow your business and reduce risks, you must make data-driven decisions. You can use basic apps like Google Analytics to check your website performance. You can use payment processing apps to simplify your payment process. You can also use inventory analytics to create an efficient inventory management system. You can even use website optimization apps to increase your sales.
It’s also a good idea to do market research before you start a project or create a product. Market research helps you minimize your investment risk and strengthen your position in the industry. It helps you discover your competitor’s weaknesses and strengths. It also helps you create an effective business strategy and make accurate revenue projections.
Brick & Mortar Strategy #8: Create A Unique Experience For Your Customers
The 10 Corso Como in Milan has this beautiful green space that makes you feel like you’re in a secret garden. The Fivestory Concept Store in New York exudes a young and eclectic energy.
If you want to take your customer in another world, your website must have this engaging and out-of-this world vibe. For example, if you’re selling matcha powders, your website must make your shoppers feel like they’re in Japan.
There’s a lot to learn from Brick and Mortar Stores. Adopting traditional retail strategies and adapt selling can significantly increase your sales. It also improves your business operational efficiency and increases your revenues and profits.
If you want to grow your business and learn more brick and mortar strategies, get in touch with the MarketplaceOps team. We have a wide variety of online business solutions that can help you expand your online business and/or Amazon brand, and hit your revenue targets.