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A marketing strategy will help you identify your best customers, understand their needs and implement the most effective marketing methods.

The internet has transformed business marketing. No matter what you do, the internet is likely to be at the heart of your marketing strategy.

Social media is firmly established as a marketing tool. Having a presence opens up new lines of communication with existing and potential customers.

Good advertising puts the right marketing message in front of the right people at the right time, raising awareness of your business.

Customer care is at the heart of all successful companies. It can help you develop customer loyalty and improve relationships with your customers.

Sales bring in the money that enables your business to survive and grow. Your sales strategy will be driven by your sales objectives.

Market research exists to guide your business decisions by giving you insight into your market, competitors, products, marketing and your customers.

Direct marketing can be a highly successful way to generate sales from existing and new customers. Find out how to target them in the best way.

Exhibitions and events are valuable for businesses because they allow face-to-face communication and offer opportunities for networking.

PR

Favourable media coverage can bring a range of business benefits. But how do you attract the attention of editors, broadcasters and journalists?

Why your retail store needs to up its game

Thanks to technology, consumerism has evolved from a rather passive form to an active one. In the past, people didn’t have the internet at the their fingertips, and therefore couldn’t find reviews, nor could they look for cheaper options. If they didn’t get it at your store, they stood a chance of losing that product for good.

Today, the internet allows you to picture-match. This means that you can take a photo of a product you like, run it through a search engine and find what you are looking for, sometimes at the wholesale price.

However, this does not mean that traditional retail is dead. Far from it - people are still going to bricks-and-mortar institutions. Here’s how to use innovation and smart tech to create an experience that gets customers excited.

People crave interaction

Shopping used to be an experience. You would call up your friends and meet up so you could hit the shops together. Friends would ask each other’s opinion on how outfits look and take their advice before making a purchase.

Aside from that, customer service is also an important aspect. Ecommerce has taken all of that away by giving us impersonal websites and apps to pick products from.

While quick and efficient service is definitely at the top of everyone’s mind, your business can learn more about how to crank up your productivity with technology, by incorporating software into your physical retail systems.

A screen can’t replace the tactile experience

Consumers still appreciate the tactile experience of shopping: touching fabric, trying an outfit on, gaining confidence in a product by testing it out, smelling perfumes, testing cosmetics on their skin or handling a bag, etc.

It’s one thing to see something online and be smitten by it, but it’s another issue when it comes to whether it will suit you or not. Certain colours might be garish on you, but bold on another, and certain items will complement your existing style while others will just look out of place.

Furthermore, products such as shoes and certain pieces such as bras need to be fitted properly, and you will never know how well an item fits you until you try it on. Therefore, being able to see, touch and test the products you’re buying remains an important aspect of shopping.

Some online stores have cottoned on to this, and now allow customers a trial period to keep the product, and return it no strings attached if it doesn’t fit the bill.

Lack of creativity is what is killing the industry

It’s not that technology is able to replace traditional stores - it’s the fact that retail is falling behind in terms of innovation. Ecommerce is very much alive with change.

Retailers have to stop looking at the market’s basic needs and focus on the needs of their specific market niche. On-trend products coupled with great service and an online presence that resonates with audiences will ultimately create experiential shopping that people will get excited about.

Copyright 2020. Article made possible by Lightspeed HQ.

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