Buying an established business is a big commitment- especially when it’s your first foray into the world of retail. Even if you’re an experienced businessperson, retail poses some serious challenges that must be grappled with. But there’s also some good news; brick and mortal retail is still alive and well. They do, however, need to adapt to the times.
Naturally, anyone who understands the first thing about retail knows that there will be a few serious hurdles that should be overcome. The greatest of these hurdles is fear. If you have the right product for the location, competitive branding and an attractive message you should be okay. Nevertheless, many first-time retail owners face significant fear factors that must be dealt with, and they have a lot to do with the problem of keeping up with online retailers. Here are some specific problems that first-time Queensland retail owners have to grapple with.
Do I know My Customer?
Major online retailers like Amazon have access to massive amounts of customer data. Traditional B&M retailers don’t, but that’s changing. There are several online tools and services that will give you access to the power of big data. Tools like Bluetooth beacons, Google metrics and much more can give you valuable data about your target demographics. Better yet, there’s a good chance that much of your local competition will not be leveraging big data. That means you’ll have an edge.
Do I Understand the Purchasing Process?
Online retailers have the advantage of being able to see just about all the customer’s identifying information at the time of purchase. This gives them marketing information and security value that a B&M retailer won’t have by default. But progress is being made as traditional retailers continue to cozy up to modern technology. A good example is Suez Technology’s In-Store Retail Analytics. This service and others like it gives store owners valuable insight into the decision process shoppers went through before buying.
Better Customer Experience
Australian retail revenue has long been driven by the power of the person-to-person purchase. This is one advantage that B&M sellers still have, the personal touch. But because of Australians’ penchant for preferring to do their shopping in person, many businesses have neglected to develop their online presences. This is an area where you could easily develop a competitive advantage. By curating an online presence, you can offer your in-person buyers special offers when they shop with you online. This also gives you plenty of opportunities to develop brand loyalty and to do direct marketing.
Delivering Omni-channel Messaging
This is where omni-channel comes in. A recent Accenture survey reported that just over 50% of Australian consumers feel the best way to improve their shopping experience is through the integration of mobile and in-store channels. This requires some finesse, but it represents the cutting edge of today’s competitive retail market. Having a successful omni-channel profile means offering your shoppers a comprehensive experience, that is to say- wherever they look, they find you. That is the Holy Grail of omni-channel marketing, and those who come closest will pull out ahead of the pack.
Keeping Pace with the Industry
The retail business looks much the same as it always has on the outside. But customer experience and the relationship between retailers and shoppers are rapidly evolving. By keeping up with tech and trends, you’ll have a much better chance of succeeding when you buy your first retail business.