The retail industry is in a state of transformation. Some have coined it the “retail apocalypse,” with many brick and mortar stores experiencing decreased sales, employee layoffs and even closures.
New research from intelligent media delivery firm Valassis offers best practices for brick and mortar retailers to succeed in a competitive and consolidating industry. “There is no question that the retail industry is facing a major digital disruption,” said Curtis Tingle, chief marketing officer at Valassis, in a news release.
“While some brick and mortar stores have closed because they could not pivot fast enough in this rapidly changing environment, that does not have to be the story for all,” Tingle added. “Looking at Prosper’s recent consumer confidence reports, it’s clear there is an opportunity for retail brands to capitalize in the current climate. To do so, they must embrace both digital and physical channels, using online and offline consumer data to drive an omnichannel engagement strategy.”
Valassis recommends the following best practices for brick and mortar retailers within a continuously evolving marketplace:
Provide competitive deals and savings offers
About one-third of consumers would be willing to shop at a new store if presented with a cash back offer, according to a recent study by RetailMeNot. Industry changes such as the expansion of savings-friendly stores, like outlets and off-price retailers, underscore just how much consumers value savings. In fact, Valassis research has shown that 90 percent of consumers use coupons obtained from a variety of online and offline sources. With these things in mind, cater to shoppers’ desire for savings by incorporating promotional deals and offers as a key part of your business’ marketing strategy.
Create an integrated shopping experience
Physical and digital shopping should not exist in silos. Consumers want more flexibility to combine those worlds—after all, they spend much of their time in both. Cater to their preferences, providing options to order online and pick-up in store; arm store associates with smart tablets to order items for home delivery; and offer a mobile app that shoppers can utilize for in-store savings.
Leverage mobile to drive in-store traffic
Mobile should be a key aspect of an integrated strategy, encouraging consumers to shop in-store. Valassis has experienced success with this approach—its cross-device retail campaigns drive significant in-store foot traffic, beating industry benchmarks as proven by attribution studies.