Amidst the moans being heard from bricks and mortar retailers, you can still see in almost any store you choose to enter, opportunities to make the experience of shopping easier.
If it was more social, friendly, service oriented in stores, it follows that shoppers would find it easier to part with their money. Human beings are social animals, we herd, and congregate around things that interest and engage us, so it seems possible to dream up strategies that enable that behavior in a store, to make it an attractive occasion to go there, even if it is to your local supermarket, there are opportunities to reconstruct the experience.
Many consumers in high value categories, from furniture to electronics and whitegoods, are “showrooming”, doing some research on-line, then going into showrooms to have a look at the short list in the physical state, then go out and buy on line. Notice the disconnect there, sales people let them out of the showroom not just without a sale, but without permission to continue the nascent relationship.
On the other hand, I wandered into the Apple store last week, seeking information for a client, went back the next day for an information session targeted at the specific questions I had, and yesterday got a targeted email offering solutions to the problems I outlined in the session.
No wonder the Apple retail stores are breaking all retail records, and they are bricks and mortar, with a huge difference, they work at creating a relationship, recognising that it is the precursor to a sale.