Repeatability. It’s an interesting word. And a retailer’s success comes as a result of how often customers repeat.
So why do customers repeat? They repeat because you’re selling consumables they need. Food, health and beauty products, household products are all reasons people shop on a regular basis because they consume these products and need more. But what if you’re not in that category?
Giving customers a reason to repeat should be a foundation of your merchandising strategy. If you’re selling furniture, you should also be selling table top items like vases, art, candles and other things people may stop by to “pick up.” If you’re selling apparel, you should be selling accessories like jewelry, belts, bags and purses, etc.
THE REAL WORLD RETAILING TAKEAWAY
The mandatories of retailing today don’t cause visits, they simply give you a leg up on your competition.
Having great customer service doesn’t cause a customer to visit. Having plenty of parking doesn’t cause a customer to visit. Having a great store environment doesn’t cause a customer to visit.
The customer visits a retailer because you have something they want. The fact that you offer great customer service or a great store experience causes them to choose you over another retailer. But the repeatability of a customer is nearly always due to great merchandise.
To increase your repeatability from a merchandising perspective, look inward, to your own experiences at other retailers. What are the reasons you continue to shop at those retailers? I know I go back because I want to see what interesting new things they have, and that’s almost always the driver. The fact that I like the store environment or the staff means I visit that store versus one of its competitors who may be carrying similar merchandise.
Make sure you showcase newness and non-core items for your customers. Create feature areas in your stores, have your staff alert customers to the new brand or items, tout a new line’s arrival on Twitter or Facebook, sent out an email to your database. There are so many ways to let your customers know you always have something new and interesting. Make sure you tell them that message versus sending another email about discounts and savings. By doing so, you’ll surely get their attention and create a repeat customer out of each of them.
So, how are you creating an interesting experience that causes repeatability among your customers?
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