With only one week till Christmas, how can retailers convert the frenzied footfall into more sales? Retail design expert Neil Arrowsmith shares his top five in-store marketing tips.
Having worked with leading retailers here and overseas, a common oversight they often make is focusing their marketing attention and budget on driving customers in store.
With seven days to go and many last minute purchases expected, the challenge for retailers is addressing how to create an engaging in store customer experience to increase dwell time and sales.
Careful consideration to the store layout and design is critical for retailers to increase Christmas sales in the next week. Most of these suggestions require an investment of time rather than dollars to make significant impact to the customer’s overall in store experience. There’s no point investing time and budget into driving customers in store if little thought has gone into maximising their experience once they set foot inside.
1. Eye catching displays in the first three feet
Use visual merchandising to draw customers in and showcase your best Christmas gift ideas. Make the display enticing and exciting.
If your top selling product is not on display within the first three feet, then make sure it is tomorrow. At the new H&M store in Melbourne, they inspire their customers with an array of festive looks beautifully displayed on entry which are readily available in store.
2. Entertain the senses
The entertainment you’re offering customers in store needs to keep them shopping longer and coming back. Think of music, lighting, digital interaction and even the scent in store. It’s Christmas, so create a festive mood to relax customers and get them into the right mind set.
At the new Samsung Experience store in Melbourne Central, we’ve helped design huge interactive screens that create the sense of in store entertainment to draw customers in. We’ve also introduced a lounge area with comfy couches to allow customers more time to use and experience each product.
3. Optimise in store browse time
Review your store layout and if it’s achievable, change the format to help customers explore every inch. Create more spacious walkways so that big trolleys and prams can fit through. Keep aisles open and clear to enable good uninhibited traffic flow. Don’t over stock your aisles or shelves making it hard to see the key gift items, instead create hot spots and points of interest throughout the store.
4. Make baskets available
Quite simply, if customers can carry more they buy more. Get your staff to walk around handing out baskets where possible.
5. Reduce purchase stress and frustration
Christmas is a stressful time for customers. Encourage some of your staff to stand near the front of store to say hello to customers when they arrive and help answer questions and direct them straight to the product they are looking for. If the store doesn’t have the stock on hand, arm your staff with iPads or a laptop to order online and pick up in store. It’s an important extra service that can help secure a sale at a busy time of year. Also ensure customers aren’t queuing too long to purchase. If you can, introduce temporary tills and transactions points.
Neil Arrowsmith is the CEO of design agency Greater Group Global.