It’s important to be prepared for the influx of shoppers and maintain your year-round service quality. With strategic holiday planning, you can overcome challenges and impress your customers head-on. Let’s check out a few ways LS Central can help you get ahead this holiday season.
Eliminate stocking issues.
Customers enter your store expecting to find what they’re looking for. However, studies have shown that retailers are losing millions in sales every year due to both out-of-stock and overstock situations. The statistics indicate an opportunity for your business to be the place that always has what customers want. But to persuade them to purchase, you need the right product availability. Ensure your physical and online stores aren’t overburdened with stock from irrelevant products. Always carry the “must-have” holiday items by optimizing your inventory management system.
How efficient is your replenishment? Automate purchase orders with LS Central for real-time visibility into sales and stock. Simplify inventory operations, prevent stockouts, and maintain optimal assortment effortlessly. Utilize a mix of manual and automated replenishment tools to reduce the risk of stock issues, saving time and money. Maximize inventory management to ensure customers leave with desired items and share positive reviews.
Offer exceptional promotions.
Consumers adore grabbing great deals. These days, the expectation is you will have impressive sales the moment Black Friday comes around. By November 20th, shoppers hunt deals eagerly. Be ready for the influx. Running promotions for your retail business holds underestimated benefits.
Ideally, your promotions should align with your business and your customer needs. Know where your pricing fits in the market relative to your competitors’ prices and assess past promotion success. Be careful to maintain the perceived “value” of your products when promoting sale prices. Your customers would rather buy a product of value than one with a price that is suspiciously low.
Running several different promotions at once can allow you to target a wider variety of shoppers. This can be complicated, however, a retail management system with powerful promotional functionality can manage your promotions across multiple channels. You can manage multiple promotions at once, plan their periods of activity, set a hierarchy that clarifies which promotion should override other promotions, and track the results of each campaign.
Customers will have positive experiences when you offer bundle discounts. Initiate buy-one-get-one-free deals and create personalized offers that can fit their tastes while maintaining a considerable profit for your business. These strategies are great for improving your margins and giving your shoppers the sense of satisfaction that comes from getting all the items on their lists at great prices.
It’s important to remind your customers how important they are to your business. With loyalty program, your stores can share their investment in the customer’s satisfaction with the customer themselves. You can strengthen their connection to your brand by rewarding them with surprise discounts, custom-tailored to their purchase history.
Solutions like LS Central help you build customer loyalty and retention by obtaining a single view of each customer. Whether they interact with you online or in-store. This allows you to personalize your offers and recommendations to create a more engaging shopping experience. With powerful AI analytics, you can figure out what your customers might like based on their profiles.
These kinds of programs can easily be set up and made available across all your touchpoints. Your customers can gain access online and via their mobile devices, which offers them much more convenience and flexibility. Let your faithful shoppers know that your business values their business. Delight them with an unexpected but personalized purchasing experience.
Embrace a unified retail platform.
With most consumers incorporating online technology into their daily routines, the reality is that your business should have both traditional and online storefronts. It is equally important that these storefronts can share data in real-time, so all your sales channels can make the most of what your business has to offer.
Some retailers attempt to solve this issue by using add-ons which they integrate with their current systems. However, these can leave you with tangled mess of different modules and vendors, all producing inconsistent data and functioning with suboptimal efficiency. Frustrating your customers.
With a unified retail management system like LS Central, you can decide which e-commerce promotions should match those found in your street-side locations, while also allowing shoppers to return and exchange items purchased online at in-store customer service counters. Most importantly, you’ll be able to match the inventory numbers shown on your site to your locations. Providing your shoppers with convenient and accurate product information is a sure-fire way to deliver a phenomenal experience.
Prioritize the employee experience.
Even though technology might be the foundation for how your business operates, you shouldn’t underestimate the power of human interaction. Whether it’s by phone, email, or on the salesfloor, the quality of your customer service shapes how your customers perceive your brand.
Customers enter your store or website with a certain set of expectations, so your staff should be able to consistently represent your business’ culture of customer service no matter where they are. Make sure you have a clearly defined set of beliefs regarding the customer experience, and don’t shy away from investing in training programs that can offer further guidance and interaction with these values. Many businesses hire seasonal employees, making it crucial to equip them with the tools for excellent customer service. This includes an intuitive Point of Sale system enabling quick and efficient training.
Your employees will also find it easier to meet and exceed customer expectations the more your culture empowers them to be friendly, informed, and responsive. If the customer is having a negative experience, your employee should feel comfortable “making it right,” even if that means giving them special pricing or in-store credit. Acknowledging a negative experience and quickly responding to it can make all the difference when trying to maintain customer loyalty.
Respond to customer feedback.
Even if you’ve done your diligence regarding inventory, promotions, loyalty rewards, employees, and your retail system, you might still find yourself faced with negative customer experiences. It happens despite your best intentions and under even the best of circumstances. What matters is that you respond to your customers’ feedback in a proactive way that shows you are invested in their opinion of your services. Remember, if they’re taking the time to inform you of a poor customer experience, there’s a very good chance they will also take their complaints to your other customers. And perhaps worst of all, the majority of your customers will switch to one of your competitors after multiple bad experiences.
Apply the same qualities customers seek in human interaction to address negative feedback: empathy, friendliness, and a genuine willingness to make things right. Prepare to acknowledge potential business shortcomings and use customer critique as a guidepost for finding solutions. The relationship you maintain with customers builds the success of your business. Champion them when dissatisfied, and they will likely continue to champion you.