What is the definition of "value" for customers? Pretty straightforward, actually.
Wait. What? "Benefits received?" "Burdens endured?"
Turns out, the only single answer to "What is value?" is, "It depends."
Don't just roll your eyes. What constitutes value for your customers increasingly is a make-or-break part of retailing.
Like beauty, value in retail operations is in the eye of the beholder. And each beholder's eye is a personal decision.
Consider this: If you were to itemize the "benefits received" by your customers, you might list your merchandise selection.
How about the benefits of a "knowledgeable sales staff?"
Well then, what about those "burdens endured?" What might that include?
Then, what about the speed of shopping for the customer (or lack of speed.)
Of course, price can always viewed as a burden. But remember, true price hounds, who always chase the lowest price, are only about 20% of all shoppers. The other 80% of shoppers are looking for other measures of value.
Clearly, you DO have benefits to provide to your customers. But before you choose which ones to feature – gift wrapping, evening hours, special events, valet parking, prices, merchandise selection – you need to have done a thoughtful analysis of who your customers really are today.
The challenge of that may be greater now than in recent years.Demographics changing, psychographics changing, opinions changing, etcetera, etcetera. Just look at the recent election.
The constant challenge for retailers is to anticipate what their customers really want. And this year, there seem to be plenty of choices available.
It is all part of the on-going challenge of retail; the art and craft of being a merchant.
Then there are the customers who are reacting to the constant drumbeat of news about supply chain issues, merchandise shortages, and looming price increases by starting their shopping early.
Adding to this stampede, some major chains were launching their Black Friday specials before Halloween!
Let's assume your stores have been closed for weeks now.
We recognize how conscientious you are. So, after paying what you can to your employees (and yourself), the next most-worrisome dilemma is your rent.
As you likely have discovered, a common choice for many landlords is to offer to defer your payments. But that means taking on more debt, as those payments are only being postponed to a later point in time.
You need a better solution than that.
Just one week until Valentine's Day! Are you feeling the love yet?
What better time to send a love note to your customers?
That's right. A Valentine. Just a Valentine. No strings attached! Show your love!
By now, you have your year-end financials for 2021. Remember, it always comes with a Balance Sheet!
Whether sales are up, down, or sideways, the financial strength – and staying power – of every business is shown on its Balance Sheet. And revealed by its Balance Sheet ratios.
There's a very important annual job for you, the owner, and all of your senior staff. It's vital, and it involves your presence.
The pressures are mounting on your stores, and in particular, your front line staff.
Some thoughts from Nordstrom leadership that are spot on!
That's what Nordstrom President and Chief Brand Officer Pete Nordstrom told Puget Sound Business Journal columnist Patti Payne on April 23, 2020.
And what he succinctly stated is exactly the challenge – and opportunity – that is confronting all retail owners.
In order to answer whether you should re-open once you can, you first must be very confident in WHAT kind of retail operation you will be re-opening.
The only certainty of the aftermath of the pandemic is that everything will be different. Given that, what better time to re-imagine your business?
Still less than $1 a day! 👀