If you have a retail business you need to attract customers to your store if you’re going to survive. Internet shopping is on the rise, but there’s one thing online shops can’t give customers, that’s the ability to touch, feel and be part of the atmosphere. As a retailer it’s essential that you learn about your customers and create a vibe that is too good to ignore. Here are three tips on how to get passers-by to enter your doors.
Get Your Business in the News
It’s hard to attract new customers if no one is really aware of your presence. This is a problem for many independent stores that don’t have a prime position on the high street. One way to increase footfall is by getting your business in the news. There are all sorts of ways you can achieve a great press release in the paper or report on the radio, for example you could:
- Raise money for charity (remembering to inform the local papers)
- Hold an event and invite the local radio station to come and perform a live broadcast on the day
- Put on live music
Promotional events are useful for drawing attention and making your business worth writing about. In addition to contacting the local media you can advertise on your own using flyers, social media and via your own website or blog.
Hold Weekly Workshops or Classes
Think of the type of classes your customers would be interested in and hold a weekly event in the morning or evening. The types of classes or workshops you hold will depend entirely on your target audience and the type of goods you sell. If you don’t like the idea of standing in front of a room of people try and find a local talent to join forces with and split any profits. Here are some ideas to get the brain turning over:
- Crafts stores, knitting shops, fabric stores – Any type of hobby craft from making homemade cards, learning to knit or advance knitting classes and sewing lessons.
- Music stores – Song writing workshops, learn how to read music, music review writing classes.
- Clothing stores – Fashion drawing and design, colour combinations, making your own clothes, deconstructing fashion.
- Fruit and vegetable shops – cooking classes, nutrition workshops, diet and healthy eating.
You can advertise the workshops locally and even hold virtual lessons (something worth considering if you have an online store). Sell tickets to the events and create affordable kits to compliment the classes as optional extras.
Re-Design the Shop Floor and Window
Focus your efforts on making the store irresistible from the outside and enjoyable on the inside. Invest in some statement design pieces such as art work, accessories and light displays, colour changing walls or amazing logos; follow the link for more details and ideas. Think carefully about your branding and the vibe your customers are going to find irresistible. Once you have completed the makeover hold a launch event with free drinks and new product launches (hold a fashion show for example).
The author specialises in shop design and light displays. He is passionate about creating unique, inviting and interesting atmospheres that are suited to the brand and the target customer. He has written several hundred articles and blogs designed to help bricks and mortar shops and businesses increase their customer footfall.