This piece is focused on ideas for retail establishments and comes from right at home here on Cape Cod. Just one idea could make a difference to your business.
RETHINK YOUR SERVICE DELIVERY MODELS
Most retail establishments have had to close their doors temporarily. Local beauty salons, although closed to appointments, are offering their beauty products for sale over the phone with curbside pickup. A local yoga studio is offering online classes and curbside pickup of yoga accessories for yogis to set up their own home studios. Some essential stores that are still open are offering special hours for customers over 60 and ensuring the store is easy in/easy out. Most retail stores are ramping up their free shipping or discounted home delivery options, with phone, online, or even Facebook Message ordering.
ADAPT YOUR PRODUCT TO THE TIMES
A local crafts company, which previously held classes in its brick and mortar shop, is offering to drop off craft kits to homes as well as downloadable projects on their website. A cupcake bakery is now shipping “cupcakes in a jar” and cupcake decorating kits. A local fabric shop is offering a “Grab and Go” face mask kit with everything you need to DIY.
EXPAND YOUR SERVICE AREA BY RAMPING UP E-COMMERCE
By leveraging digital marketing tools and e-commerce, you can expand your service area. Is your website up to date? Is your e-commerce platform functioning properly? Are you merchandising your products effectively online, even with phone orders only?
UNDERSTAND THE EVOLVING NEEDS OF YOUR CUSTOMERS AND COMMUNICATE
It’s important to communicate with your customers and listen to their new needs. Consumers are concerned about hygiene and sanitizing practices of stores and products; be clear about your policy. Stay at home orders have increased interest in key categories: DIY projects, home improvements, activities for children, etc. It’s a good time to review your advertising messages for relevance and share your new offerings. Maybe take time to update your Google Business page, refine your social media business presence,and use digital advertising to draw attention to your website.
INCREASE YOUR USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORMS
Use social media to interact with your customer base in a new way. Pinterest, Instagram, and of course Facebook are seeing record levels of engagement since consumers have been at home.
EXPAND YOUR PROMOTIONAL TACTICS
It’s important to continue the standard practices of percentage off discounts, gift with purchase, buy one get one free, tiered discounts, and loyalty programs to drive business. Why not try online photo or video contests to engage customers?
CONSIDER CAUSE RELATED MARKETING
One local jeweler created a Relief Bracelet and portions of the sale are donated to the Coronavirus Relief Fund. Others are aligning themselves and donating products to non-profits in need.
PREPARE FOR THE RECOVERY
This crisis will pass. What will your Grand Re-Opening look like?
We hope these ideas stimulate some thoughts for your business; let us know how we can be of service. We can get through this together.