Retailers know they’re out there – shoppers who come into bricks and mortar stores and could be convinced to make a purchase. The trouble is, these shoppers – often labeled ‘mission shoppers’ must be marketed to in just the right way. A recent column in Bloomberg Business highlighted strategies that are working in the new economy.
Before the recession, a shopper on an outing might have visited up to 5 stores – checking out merchandise. These trips might have involved purchasing items on a list but also included impulse buys. Nowadays, these shoppers are going into fewer stores and limiting their purchases. At the same time, the in-store experience has suffered as retailers boosted their online presence.
To impress in-store shoppers, retailers are rethinking their bare-bones approach and taking new steps to improve the environment. For example, well-known retailers are hiring more staffers to walk the aisles to help customers find what they’re looking for. Merchandise is being grouped by lifestyle category in an attempt to upsell clients. That same strategy is being used with product displays placed near registers. And even the dingy dressing room is being reconfigured. Trendy pods located throughout the retail space make it more inviting for shoppers to try on that sweater.
Retailers are also making use of technology. Employees are equipped with smartphones and can quickly determine inventory levels of specific items. In consumer entertainment stores, tablets are being used to demonstrate “pricey toys such as helicopters and robots that can be controlled using a mobile app.”
David Maddocks, a former chief marketing officer for Nike’s Converse brand says retailers must “get more out of every person that walks through the door.” Stores that successfully market in this way should see sales rise.[Source: Townsend, Matt. Retailers Woo the ‘Mission Shoppers’. Businesses. 10 Nov. 2011. Web. 8 Dec. 2011]