As retailers wrestle with the corollaries of the global pandemic, many are hastening their plans and devising effective strategies to remain relevant in the new normal. The retail industry cannot afford to remain in wait-and-see mode; therefore, they are accelerating their digital transformation and modernization initiatives.
Assuredly, retailers are recovering; however, they must become more resilient using customer insights and analytics to thrive and mitigate further disruptions. Over the past few months, customers have been more inclined towards online shopping. However, by realizing the power of data intelligence in retail, retailers can enable a seamless shopping experience for customers and continue operating their business effectively and even more profitably than earlier.
According to a market study of key retail analytics vendors from North America, Europe, APAC, Latin America, and MEA regions, the global retail analytics market size will grow from $4.3 billion in 2020 to $11.1 billion by 2025, at a CAGR of 21.2%. Therefore, even if your retail store has not mastered the dynamics of digital commerce, you can still leverage data and AI to increase retail foot traffic.
Here are some best practices to set your retail business on the path to success.
Ways to drive more foot traffic to your store
Focus on customers you already have
According to Forbes, acquiring new customers costs five times as much as retaining existing ones. Therefore, retailers can leverage data intelligently and direct their focus on customers with high frequency of visits and monetary value. By looking at customers’ online wish-lists and shopping carts, retailers can work on strategies on how best to target them.
A complete 360° view of customers by aggregating their transactional, behavioral and demographic data across all touchpoints (in-store, online store, social media, and mobile apps) can help retailers monitor buying journeys of existing customers, and re-align their marketing spend, promotion & discount deals, and other activities accordingly.
For a while now, the customer journey has been consistently evolving. It is no longer about visiting the store first and taking a look at the potential options, followed by purchases. Now, it involves an overall brand experience: customers arrive at the store after doing their online research and they know what they want. If they are looking for a moisturizer, chances are they know more about its formula and uses than your sales associates do. Retailers should focus on building omnichannel customer profiles, so they can promptly respond to the ever-shifting market trends and customer preferences.
Invest in personalizing customers’ experience
Retailers with more control over their data ecosystem can seamlessly leverage insights from data to offer customized shopping experiences. By segmenting customers based on demographics and behavior, you can implement significant changes in your store’s layout. Re-imagining and designing the store layouts according to customer needs and preferences gives a sense of personalization to customers, effectively encouraging them to come back for more, which will help in increasing foot traffic to your store.
Similarly, you can personalize their experience online as well. By adding a birthday field in your customer profile, you can offer gift cards or special discounts when a customer checks out of your store on their birthday. With data, the opportunities are endless.
Monitor your inventory and supply chain
Knowing what you have, what is resting in your warehouse, and proficiently managing supply chain is the backbone of the retail business, as customer expect to receive their orders timely and accurately. Optimized supply chain and inventory management practices equip retailers with an accurate view of their best-selling products, inventory turnover, and what inventory is needed to fulfill customers’ orders.
By using the right, modern point of sale (POS) system, you can easily cross-off one of the biggest customer complaints – inventory issues – on your list. Right after a sale is made, a modern POS system will automatically update the stock quantity.
Moreover, with data intelligence tools you can achieve equilibrium between too much or too little inventory, resulting in reduced inventory costs. It can help you maintain high service levels and foot traffic, which will equate to higher customer satisfaction. With insights into what is selling and what is not, you can reduce the number of products that need to be marked down at the end of every season.
Understand the power of analyzing unified data
From online browsing to in-store shopping, customers go through multiple channels to purchase, so if your customer data is stored in different silos, then it is scattered everywhere, often leading you to miss valuable insights and potential sales opportunities. There has been a rapid rise in the popularity of convenience services such as self-check-out, click-and-collect, curbside/store-door pickup, buy online-pickup-in-store (BOPIS), and free or hassle-free returns through services like a centralized returns area in retail stores.
With well-integrated systems for inventory, sales, marketing, and customer experience management, retailers have data coming in from various touchpoints. Insights from your data and feedback from your staff can be amalgamated and unified. For instance, if data highlights that customers are buying products that are shelved at the front of your store and even your staff report that customers are spending more time at the front, changing your product assortment and allocating shelf space accordingly can go a long way in increasing foot traffic.
Reshape your Omnichannel customer engagement with AcuitySpark
AcuitySpark by Visionet is a unified Data Intelligence platform for Retail; it delivers customer and operational intelligence to multichannel retailers. It allows companies to seamlessly align sales, marketing, and operations around the expectations of their customers. With this ready-to-run solution that integrates and unifies data from multiple systems like Dynamics 365, Magento, Google Analytics, and Salesforce Commerce Cloud, you can optimize inventory, pricing, shelving, and more.
You can leverage real-time information on stock levels and customers’ purchasing behavior to manage your supply chain and meet demand with accuracy and precision. The goal is to have a 360° view to understand the buying behavior of customers, create customer segments, and enhance the ability to adapt to market trends.
Data intelligence is the key to retail success
Shoppers of today demand a safe, seamless shopping environment – and they want it their way. We have said it before, and we will say it again: one of the keys to achieving customer centricity and retail success is to be more data-centric.
Get in touch with our experts and reshape your customer engagement by leveraging a single platform for all your retail insights and analytics needs.