We’ve all heard the saying, “if you can’t beat them, join them.” Brick and mortar stores are having to do just that to compete with the rapidly growing eCommerce world. eCommerce has been taking over for many years but as time goes on, it’s literally driving store fronts out of business.
That’s for those who aren’t willing to think of out of the box ways to draw people in. Stores such as Nordstrom has created an experience for customers that is no longer about just shopping. You can mingle, have drinks, and shop all at once in a clothing store without clothes. Yes, you read that right! Find out more here. Other retailers are taking things to an entirely different level with things such as virtual mirrors. You can use a mirror to get accessories and even different sizes delivered straight to your fitting room. It’s all about making the consumers trip to their location easier and more enjoyable.
With generation changes, comes changes in habits-including shopping habits. This could be the reason that in 2016, eCommerce sales grew 14% compared to only 5% for offline shopping from the previous year ( Entrepenur.com ) These numbers are predicted to stay on this trend. However, as brick and mortar locations develop more and more exciting ways to shop in store, they may just be onto something.
If you think about the stores who has closed in the last decade, you can probably agree that those stores hadn’t changed much with time. Sears, Radio Shack, and Office Depot are just a few who come to mind. Instead of trying to come up with new marketing strategies, these stores tried the merger option. This hasn’t proven to be effective considering these stores are still on a downhill spiral. This shows that to stay competitive in today’s market, you must constantly be thinking of new ways to reach your customers.
Many retail chains who already have an online presence along with brick and mortar stores, are not only trying to up their game in store but as a whole. Stores such as JCPenney are using subscription, delivery, & other innovating ways to keep their customers coming back. Paula Rosenblum states that companies are going to have to spend on innovations and keep moving ahead or they shouldn’t expect to be around long (USA Today.)
With everything at our finger tips, experiences is what the customer is now paying for. How easy is it, how much can you save me, and what makes it interesting (think back to the virtual mirrors?) Out of the box ideas bring customers in, encourage them to spend money, and keep business’ running. Whether you’re an online retailer, have a brick and mortar location, or both—you must be fast, exciting, & constantly looking to please your customer.