In Part 2 of Tailor Made, you will find tips on how you can better tailor to your customer’s needs and boost your bottom line.
As a retailer your goal is to create a business that is profitable because it caters to your customers wants, needs and desires. With any business it is about the relationships that you create which will help to create the success you are after. It is about weaving an intricate thread where you provide a superior product and service that leaves your customers feeling positive and uplifted by their shopping experience. Ensure that you weave a thread of positivity so that customers will remember your business and come back time and time again and will tell others of their experience.
Probably the single best advice that anyone can give a retailer is to listen. Listen to your customers. Ask them questions and understand what they really want.
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
You need to take on different roles, a tinker, tailor, soldier, and spy.
In order to know what your customers really are after you can simply ask them.
Train your staff to be spies and ask them a question at the point of sale. You can also email out surveys to your customer base and offer them discounts for filling in the survey. Engage them on Facebook by posting items and asking them to like the product if you are thinking of stocking it before you make the financial commitment. You may want to set up an online store that may help supplement your off-line offering.
In order to tailor to your customers needs, you may ask them. But then you need to tinker, or test and measure to see what they have asked for or what they said they wanted to see is really what they want. The best way is to buy only a few wholesale items and test to see how quickly they sell and what feedback you get before ordering a large amount of the product and then being left with a lot of stock to have to discount.
When you are really tailoring to your customers needs and test and measure to ensure that everything is going smoothly you will find that customers will become a soldier for your business. They will go into battle and tell others what a great business you have.
Good old-fashioned service never goes out of fashion. This is one of the advantages that online stores are quickly catching up on so bricks and mortar stores need not sit on their laurels. In fact, if a customer is kept waiting or isn’t attended too they may just well leave and look elsewhere, and often online. Ensure your staff are well trained in helping your customers when they walk into the store and adding value through add-ons. Just like a tie may offset a suit, the right add on such as a gift-wrapping service or even a product that may add to the sale will no doubt add to your bottom line.
It’s All In The Detail
As any good tailor will tell you, the quality of a piece of garment is all in the details. The way the seams are stitched and how accurate the garment is fitted makes all the difference. Similarly, become a ‘de-tailor’. Pay attention to the entire customer experience that you provide. Walk in their shoes for a while. Look at every aspect of your business with a fine toothed comb – from the way you market your business, to the way you research what your customers need, to the way you service them and you will discover that success is really about getting everything right.
Creating a successful retail business is all about the relationships you create and it all begins by listening – listening to your customers wants and delivering on this. It is about paying attention to detail so that you can create a customer experience that will ensure that they do business with your business again and again and tell others. Remember to become a successful business tailor to your customers. Don’t be a retailer – become a ‘retailor’.
* Image above is public commons.
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