The Future of Retail in 2023: Five Game-Changing Insights
Covid-19 changed the retail landscape dramatically. Store owners are left wondering how to position their enterprises for success in the ever-changing market. It’s nearly impossible to perfectly predict the future, but there are some common practices and modern tools you can take advantage of to accurately predict what awaits you in the near future.
Retail has long been known for its dynamic nature and even physical spaces are becoming more and more digital and data reliant. Although the world may be going back to the way it was, consumer behavior has changed forever, and it will change again. This is a challenge you can’t tackle with expertise or guessing alone, however, keeping in step with the times will vastly improve your chances of success.
In this article, we’ll explain how technology is shaping the retail industry and share some valuable insights on how you can improve your business using the right technology.
Table of Content
Understanding The Customer Journey
Understanding the customer journey is crucial if you want to boost your revenue and net profit. Why do customers visit your store, what products they’re most interested in, what makes them come back, how often do they shop at your store, and who are your best customers? This isn’t a guessing game anymore, not when you have modern people counting technologies available at your fingertips.
If you truly want to understand your customers, you need accurate and reliable data first. Only then you can start analyzing customer behavior and find out all the answers you’re looking for in order to improve your numbers. “Guesstimating” is outdated, no matter how experienced you are.
Speed and Convenience
Back in the good old days, customers wouldn’t mind waiting in long lines, nor would they care if they had to wait for service for a minute or five even. One-day delivery? Never heard of it either. You get the point, and you also know that this has changed. Speed and convenience no longer exceed customer expectations, they’re expected.
As a business owner, it’s now your responsibility to help your customers save time and make their shopping experience the best it can be. There are a number of ways to get this done, preferably by measuring wait times with reliable technology and coming up with a solution that uses actual data.
Go Digital For The Right Reasons
Today, digital presence is key to acquiring new customers and building long-term relationships with them. Having an online presence is no longer a special, fancy feature; it’s yet another essential thing a shopper expects, even if you don’t do shipping.
Even if you’re providing a service or a product that can’t be shipped you must be on the web and preferably on social media to reach a wider audience. Consumers are using the internet for all sorts of things, and one of those things could be looking for exactly what you sell.
However, having an online presence isn’t just launching a few social media pages and registering your store on Google Business. The digital space is where you can build trust with potential customers and improve loyalty with existing ones.
You need to identify your target audience and start creating content specifically tailored to their interests, preferably on the channel they’re most active if your budget or time is limited. When your business is active and produces quality content on the web, it shows them that your business cares about what it does, and that care rubs on the potential consumers as trust.
Once you convince them to come and visit your actual store your responsibility doubles. You and your team have to provide exceptional customer support and make sure the customers leave your place satisfied. The more people visit your store the more data you will get, provided you invest in a people counting solution. All digital stores rely on analytics tools to process this data and get ahead of the competition. Why not do the same for your physical spaces, especially when not all your competitors are using them, yet…
Listen to What Your Store Tells You
Your store has so much to tell you, but it can’t speak for itself unless you invest in it the right way. Data is the language it speaks, but that’s only valuable when it’s highly accurate. Having inaccurate and unreliable data will only make things worse. Mounting a people counter at an entrance that can’t even tell the difference between a group of people and just one customer will prove horrible in the long run, maybe even earlier.
Unfortunately, most sensors on the market are far from being up to date, they rely on cheap and outdated technologies. Yes, they do indeed count people, but usually, that’s the most they do. Knowing approximately how many people get in and out of your store alone doesn’t provide actionable information. This is only the beginning of the story your store is trying to speak to you.
By obtaining accurate, reliable, and actionable data, you can learn so much about what works for your retail store and what does not. Real-time people counting can tell you what your prime hours are and demographic analysis can tell you who exactly are your customers. Do you need to hire new employees, or perhaps schedule their work schedule better to optimize their performance? A reliable people counting technology is basically your translator and the more you use it, the more chemistry you and your store will have.
Prepare Personalized Marketing Campaigns
Modern people counting technologies use artificial intelligence and machine learning to provide you accurate information about your customers, their in-store journey, and behavior.
Knowing your customers will help you design personalized marketing campaigns. Or perhaps you have a product ideal for a specific type of shopper, but you’re not getting enough visits from them, they pass by your store but you can’t draw them in. This happens a lot, but if you’ve got meaningful data you can immediately increase your draw-in rate by showing personalized advertisements to people passing by your store, or launch a lightning campaign and slash the prices for products they’re interested in. Are they regular customers? Good, give them a loyalty bonus or discount with a time limit, while they’re at your store.
Knowing which part of your store is doing hot, you can launch a loss leader campaign. Find the product that’s selling well and place it at the hot corner of your store, slash its prices, but optimize your store in a way to ensure customers have to go through other sections of the store first. You’ll lose profit from one product, but this will significantly improve your chances of selling your other worse-performing inventory.
You can do so much when you know your strengths and weaknesses. Saying goodbye to the game of chance and guesswork is a milestone for physical spaces.
Visitor analytics is not just for the web. We live in a world where people are constantly on the move, and physical spaces need to be able to adapt. That’s where V-Count comes in. We provide a fast and accurate way to count and analyze visitors in physical locations.
If you want your store to maximize its potential and grow further you need a partner who can show you the way and be there for you at all times.
V-Count is the world’s leading manufacturer of 3D people counting sensors (all sensors come with a highly-customizable dashboard), providing a fast, accurate and reliable way to count and analyze visitors in all kinds of physical spaces. The future of people counting is here, request a demo now.