Retail Management Strategies
Retail Management Strategies
Retail is the method of selling consumer products or services directly to consumers through various channels of distribution in a retail store to make a profit. Retailers meet demand identified by a supply chain. The supply chain begins with the manufacturer, wholesaler, retailer or dealer who supplies merchandise to the retailer, who then sells the product to the end-user or customer.
A new trend impacting retail is leveraging social media to improve customer relationships. Retail stores can use social media tools such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn to get the word out about their business, including specials, news, new product lines and new locations. Retailers can also leverage the power of their websites to increase traffic to their websites as well as sales. Retail websites should include a social media section to enable consumers to connect with the company on a one-to-one basis.
Another way to create buyer personas in the retail business environment is to engage in dialogue with current customers. Retailers can attend trade shows to network with other retailers. Retailers should offer advice to potential customers as well as be available for follow up questions and feedback. By engaging the customer, the retailer creates a sense of urgency to purchase now in order to avoid losing out on future sales.
Many retail stores rely heavily on their in-store display system. Store clusters offer merchandising opportunities for multiple outlets and allow for quick comparisons between different merchandise. A successful store cluster draws traffic from multiple sources and encourages impulse purchases. Retail outlets should design product displays to focus on key areas of each outlet. For example, a sports store cluster may have basketball, football and golf displays, whereas a health and beauty store cluster might feature skin care, dietary supplements and so on.
A large retailer with multiple outlets can benefit from a comprehensive marketing plan. The retailer should draw on a variety of marketing resources, including store design, promotional events, Internet marketing, media promotions and product line extension. In addition, the retailer should track and monitor its performance using analytical tools and relative price emphasis. Additionally, the business should determine which of its products draw the most interest and should develop marketing plans for those products. Retail marketing includes evaluating the success of a new product line by analyzing consumer responses to similar products or a similar store layout.
Relative price emphasis retailing involves maintaining a competitive advantage over similar goods in competing stores. However, this advantage is sometimes obtained at the expense of customer service. Many retailers claim that customers find it difficult to deal with knowledgeable or impatient staff members. Retailers should consider improving customer service. Customers will pay more money for products and services that are easy to understand and interact with, and high-trained staff members will increase store traffic and sales.