All too often these days, customers go into actual shops to see, feel and test products. Then, they log on to their smartphones and tablets to order online, often at a reduced price. It is time for retailers to take advantage of technology to keep those potential buyers in their stores right up to paying the cashier.
What are the main attractions of online shopping? Usually, it is the ease with which shoppers can access competitive prices, special promotions, detailed product descriptions and even customer reviews. Also, the customer doesn’t have to get dressed, wait for a bus, fight traffic or drive in circles looking for a parking spot, all before the store closes for the night.
How do bricks and mortar retailers fight that almost effortless, online shopping experience? What can they do to encourage the shopper to browse in a store instead of scrolling on a phone? Check out this strategy.
Fight the online edge right at the store’s shelf edge. The turnaround solution for many retailers has been an electronic shelf label (ESL) system.
Savvy retailers appeal to the customer’s head and heart. The ESL technology provides all the product details customers need to make informed decisions. Searching through product specs, customer reviews, promotional info and, most importantly, the actual price, shoppers can be confident they are working with accurate, complete, real time information. Providing comparison prices from competitors can be the final deal maker.
Even though their heads might be full of good information, customers often need that visceral response in order to complete a purchase. They want to be able to pick up the product, feel it, turn a demo item on and off, maybe even smell and listen to it. If they have a positive sensory experience holding it in their hands, they are more likely to take it to the checkout.
It doesn’t matter if the item is worth only a few dollars or a few hundred dollars, every shopper wants to believe they have made the best choice possible. A serious consumer will take the time to research even the smallest purchase. After all, there must be a good reason for looking at it in the first place.
It is important to respect the customers’ need for information and the time they take to consider their possible purchases. Sometimes the smallest detail is the one that determines the in-store sale. Successful retailers don’t make assumptions about customer needs. They just provide easy access to the facts in a trend setting, cost effective ESL system.