More people are setting up a retail business now, some started as side hustles that took off, others have always been a dream and now it’s being pursued.
We’ve been getting more questions about business in general so will address some of the questions in a series of articles.
This article is all about getting people into your store.
If you want your business to be successful you need sales and a large part of sales from brick and mortar stores is through foot traffic.
You want as many people as possible – or as many as you can manage – to enter your store and buy something.
As it happens, there are some tried and tested ways to bring more people into your store, so let’s take a look now at what they might be and how to make use of them.
Keep It Presentable
As obvious as it sounds, sometimes when you get someone else to look at your store through fresh eyes, they will point out things you’re missing because you see it every day.
You would be surprised just how much of a difference it can make to your success as a store if you keep it looking as presentable as possible.
This is something that a lot of people overlook, and the fact is that this ends up in a situation where nobody really wants to come in.
Keeping the entrance clean, windows washed, free of any debris, cobwebs etc is important.
Signage and how fresh it looks matters as well. Get the best quality you can afford that will last a long time and update it as needed.
Ensure the storefront has an attractive display you change regularly and keep everything else as presentable as possible.
Make it accessible for all e.g have a ramp as well as stairs or keep it on the ground floor as this will make a huge difference to how many people can come into your store.
Unfortunately, accessibility is one area some small business owners overlook and it can cost them dearly.
Special Offers Or Loyalty Programs
People are always going to be attracted to offers and discounts so you might want to consider a sales rack with end of season items, a loyalty program or similar.
If you are able to put some offers on from time to time, and make them clearly visible from the street, that is one of the best and tried and tested ways to bring people in.
Have a clear marketing plan regarding any discounts, special offers or loyalty programs to maximise the success of anything you do as well.
Check the budget and don’t undersell yourself.
Sales attract bargain customers so if that is not your ideal clientele, skip the sales.
Focus On Cleanliness
This is part of being presentable, but it’s also important for inside the store.
You need to keep the store clean for the health and safety of your staff and customers.
Cleaning the store is a continuous task and one you need to do every chance you get.
Wipe over racks, windows, displays, the counter and give a deeper clean by vacuuming and mopping every evening.
Keeping a store clean also includes having a decent pest control routine, so that customers never see any rodents or anything else of the sort in the store.
One salon I worked in did this regularly. The shopping centre had a severe issue with cockroaches and our store was the only one that didn’t have that issue as we maintained pest control and were extreme with our cleaning.
All in all, you need to make sure that your store looks great and that it reflects well on your brand, and that also means that you’ll have to think about the branding itself.
This should be clear and unique, and you should be able to represent it outside your store as well as possible.
Keep it consistent across your social media, website, email list and any other marketing you do too so people recognise your store easily.
If you can do that, you should find that you are going to be able to have a store that people come to a lot and which you are proud of all in all.