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How to create WOW! in retail?

What will average consumer remember after visiting the store? Usually not much. He can be satisfied with the products he bought, but visit at the point of sale will remember as ordinary experience, just another forgettable event in his life.
Stores have huge room to maneuver – if they succeed in capturing the imagination and emotions of customers, visit in the store might be remembered for a long time – excited and engaged customers will come back soon. How can we make this happen? Here are some suggestions prepared by the authors of the business blog Instigator. This is their short recipe for making the WOW! effect in the retail industry:

1. Brand is a priority

Retail stores & companies have to stand for something more than their product. In fact, they’re not really selling their product at all — they’re selling something else – emotions and experience. Retailers should respond to the customers desires and needs. The point of sale creates a unique connection with customer. It works better with a strong brand.

2. The discounts are not effective

Consumers have become accustomed to discounts and expect them to be higher and higher. 25%, 50%, 70% off? What if even 70% is not enough? Will you offer 80 or 90%? Price isn’t a competitive advantage anymore, especially for smaller retailers. Only biggest players can afford to offer low prices. You can’t win that game – better offer something else.

3. The element of surprise

Customers like to be surprised, and they like to talk about it – surprise drives word-of-mouth — and that’s what stores need. How can we surprise customers? For example by organizing the draw. Every hour we choose a happy customer and give him a coupon for shopping. The winner will definitely be pleased with the win and will talk about it with his friends.

4. Honesty is the best policy

A woman walks up to a salesperson and asks “Does this look good on me?”. She asks because she is uncertain and has doubts. Most salespersons will respond this way: “Of course! It looks great” (Translated: Buy! Buy! Buy! And get out of my face) But what happens, if the salesperson responds differently (meaning: honestly)? Woman might be happy that she was “talked out of the purchase” (instead of going home, doubting herself and being frustrated by a pushy salesperson). She certainly will tell her friends about the store, where employees are telling the truth.

5. Employees

The employees in a retail store are essential. The strongest brand and the best marketing does not help when an employee is incompetent or unresponsive. It means that customer will leave the store angry and then spread negative reviews about the shop. We tend to complain more publicly than praise. Most of us had experienced great service in a store or restaurant, and we know how big difference it makes. Doesn’t it?

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