Boost retail sales, with this customer-focused marketing tip

By Jim Connolly

In today's retail marketing article, I'm going to share a simple, yet extremely powerful idea with you. It's all about how to increase the number of sales you make, across your entire store, by selling and marketing from a slightly different perspective.

Allow me to explain.

Selling to ourselves

When you look inside an independent retail store, what you will often find is that the marketing of products in-store, is optimized by the storeowner. He or she positions and places their merchandise, in a way that would inspire the store-owner to buy, if he or she was the customer. Of course, they are not the customer.

We call this approach, marketing to yourself.

The challenge with marketing to ourselves, is that we’re not selling to ourselves. What’s needed, is for everything to be optimized, so that it is as attractive and motivating as possible for our customers.

Customer focused marketing

When you look at the big, successful retailers you will find they adopt a very different approach. Everything within their stores is optimized, based around what is most compelling to their customers.

This is the approach I'm going to suggest you consider, in order to get the very best sales results.

Where to begin? Here are two great places to start.

Firstly, put your merchandise where customers expect it to be

When customers take longer to find their purchase than you would expect, pay attention to the first place they look. If you notice that people often look in the same place, for a product that you have situated in a different part of the store, consider moving it where your customers expect to find it.

Why?

Because by making products easier to find, you get them in front of a prospective customer quicker… when they are most eager to buy.

You will also be arranging your stock, in a way that’s optimized for the customer, which means optimized for maximum sales. Yes, this process takes time, however, by testing and measuring the changes you make, it’s possible to see significant improvements.

Secondly, ask your customers for feedback

This is extremely important. Never miss an opportunity to learn more about the needs and wants of your customers. 

Retailers will often stock certain products because they think, if they were a customer, that's what they would want to buy. This is another example of marketing to yourself. Stock needs to be driven by the wants of the customer, if you want it to sell.

Also, retailers will often miss something, which really bugs their customers. I recall working on this with a retailer, who always played music when the store was open. He was a huge jazz fan. It turned out, after asking his customers for feedback, that most of them didn’t like the music and that it was way too loud. Some said they would spend as little time in the store as absolutely necessary.

Not good, if you want people to browse your merchandise and make additional purchases!

It turned out that the retailer had limited hearing and wasn’t aware the music was so loud. By switching to a local radio station and adjusting the volume, he created a far better customer experience.

By finding out exactly what customers really want, you can make sure that what you're selling is in line with what your customers want to buy. This is a great way to:

  • Improve your purchasing
  • Move merchandise faster
  • … and improve your cash flow!

In summary

You will be amazed at the results that can be achieved, when your in-store marketing is developed around the way your customers want to buy things.

Of course, the same is true of your marketing in general. So, I shall be sharing some ideas with you in a future retail marketing article, to improve the effectiveness of your marketing messages, by making them directly relevant and more motivating for your customers.

Finally, I hope you found this useful. Remember to check out all the other free retail marketing resources we have available for you here on the CTS Wholesale website.

To find out how CTS Wholesale can help your retail business, simply click here.