Brand, product, delivery, and price are some of the most important things that will never change in retail business. They remain as crucial today as they were decades ago. What is transforming, though, is the need to develop new processes, new technology, skills and organizational design for the retail business. Therefore, we can say that your retail business does not simply need any digital strategy, by a unique one that is suitable for the modern age.
One thing that you can be sure about is that it is almost impossible to make profits using the strategies that used to work decades ago. In the highly competitive markets, such as Malaysia, Hong Kong, and Singapore, you have to be more innovative. Let’s highlight the main pillars that you can use to stand out and become more successful.
Understanding the Targeted Consumers
Retail customers vary depending on city, street, state, and region. Therefore, it is crucial that you understand local market dynamics to ensure the products you are offering meet the needs of the local market. The best method is staying connected with customers to understand their shifting needs.
Try to walk in the customers’ shoes by leveraging the power of Facebook and other social media networks. They make it easy to follow clients and carry regular analytics to determine their sentiments. Even when there are negative sentiments, perhaps arising from dissatisfied clients or misconceptions, it is easy to jump in and provide correction.
Defining the Business Value Proposition and Keeping It Relevant
If you look at the most successful retail companies, they are very customer-centric. You should also adopt a similar model. Therefore, you need to interact, and harness the intelligence of customers to establish their genuine thoughts about your business. Then, craft new ways of serving the customers better.
Over the last two decades, the retail sector has changed so much. Today, it is more about what the customers want as opposed to what the store owners like. Therefore, you have to start building trust and making your customers feel part of the organization. This implies that optimizing profits cannot be the overriding goal for the company.
One company that has focused on improving the customer focus and succeeded so much is New World Development in Hong Kong. Under the leadership of the new General Manager, Adrian Cheng, the mall focused on enhancing the experiences of customers. Some of the models employed at the mall include offline-to-online practices and building on the facility as a cultural destination.
Providing a Seamless Omni-channel Experience
Are the experiences that customers get in different channels the same? If it is different, there is a danger of them walking away feeling cheated. For example, a customer who finds a red dress that was advertised online as black might feel that she is being tricked into purchasing something different. You need to make the experience as consistent as possible.
The best way to harmonize the experience is by trying to understand the buyer’s journey and redefining the touch points. For example, most customers start the buying process on social media before checking reviews, following on the website, and finally walking to a store for a purchase. Consider using the power of artificial intelligence to understand what customers want and offer it in the best way possible.
These pillars can help you not only make your retail store stand out but make every visit unique. As we demonstrated with the New World Development, you have to appreciate that your store is unique and look for the best experience. Other strategies that you should use in your retail store include institutionalizing analytics and accelerating the use of technology.