Since high street retail reopened for business this spring, many business owners went above and beyond to entice new and returning customers. Now, with the busy Christmas shopping season in full flow, retailers are under more pressure than ever to stand out from the crowd by delivering a standout shopping experience.
If you’re among them and are searching for a few pointers on how to keep the till ringing throughout the Christmas season and beyond, keep reading. We’ve put together a list of 10 of our favourite tips to help you stand out from the competition and create an enviable storefront. Ready to plan for success? Let’s get started, then …
If your shop has its own dedicated car park, you’re already half a step ahead of the competition. Your customers can browse uninterrupted without the worry of getting hit with a parking fine. However, that doesn’t mean that a standard car parking space can’t be improved. Make sure that spaces are clearly marked.
For a contemporary look, consider block paving the parking area. And, to keep it looking fresh, be sure to pressure wash on a regular basis. Using a high-quality block pave sealer every now and then will also help to prevent dirt, water, oil, grease and other contaminants from seeping through the gaps and potentially damaging the paving.
Place a bike rack outside your store to ensure that anyone arriving on two wheels is just as welcome as those on four! With a safe place to lock their bikes up, cyclists will be free to browse without a worry. They’ll feel safe spending a little time (and hopefully a little extra cash) in your store.
Although a creative window display is one of the oldest tricks in the retailer’s playbook, it can also be one of the most effective when implemented to good effect! With the Christmas season picking up steam, it’s time to deck the halls (and the windows) with all things festive. Think bells, tinsel, elves – and don’t be afraid to spray a little fake snow to complete the effect.
This is your chance to really impress passers-by – so make it count! If you happen to catch the eye of a social media vulture or two and they share your work with their followers, you’ll soon be basking in some free publicity …
Building a strong social media presence can go a long way in raising awareness of your store among your target audience. There are many powerful social media platforms that you can use to put your business on a map. To gain a strong social reach, you should have active accounts on at least a few of these.
Once you have built up a social audience, you can alert them to news about your latest products and offers. The best social platforms to be a part of varies depending on which industry you operate in, but Twitter, Instagram and Facebook usually make that list!
On a related note, we live in a connected world – and most of your customers won’t pass up the chance to catch up with all their favourite social platforms whilst shopping. So, keep them connected by providing a complimentary Wi-Fi hotspot.
And, who knows, a big-time influencer just might visit your store some day. With Wi-Fi on tap, they’ll be able to share their big haul with all their followers. Just imagine all the free publicity!
Regardless of which sector you operate in, there’s a fair chance that busy parents make up a significant part of your target market. By introducing a ‘kid-friendly zone’ to your store, you can provide a welcome break for parents visiting your store with their kids in tow.
Invest in a selection of books, activities and toys to occupy your youngest customers and you’re all set. Their parents will be happy too – and free to browse, without any distractions!
It’s also worth bearing in mind many of your customers (including parents) may be accompanied by their four-legged friends. To help encourage them to visit your store, why not advertise it as ‘dog-friendly’? That way, everyone will know that dogs of all shapes and sizes can expect nothing less than a five-star experience when they stroll through your door.
Keep a jar or two stocked with complimentary treats, along with a few water bowls and dogs just might start bringing their owners …
Music can make a massive difference when it comes to attracting customers. But, not just any music! Think about the demographic you’re trying to appeal to and choose the type of music that you think would resonate with them the most.
Why not invite an aspiring singer or DJ to perform a set in store? The right performers could draw large crowds to your premises.
Dated and worn furniture can negatively affect customers’ perception of your store. If replacing your old furniture with brand new units is not feasible, you may also consider upcycling.
As long as your furniture is in reasonable condition, the simple act of repainting can give it a new lease of life. A set of cushions and coverings can complete the transformation from old … to new and interesting.
Finally, balloons create movement and can be very effective in drawing the eye to your storefront. A well-arranged display of colourful balloons could be just what you need to draw in the crowds over the Christmas season.
You may also consider tying balloons to exterior railings or cinder blocks. One thing to bear in mind: make sure you have a good supply of balloons available, as they deflate quickly (particularly during the warmer months) and you’ll need to replace them regularly to keep your display looking great!
Many thanks for reading our latest article. We hope you found it helpful and now have oodles of inspiration for how to plan your best Christmas sale yet. No matter what you decide on, we wish you every success through the Christmas season and beyond.