Retail Survival – Reliable Tactics for Unreliable Times
COVID-19 has created an unprecedented crisis for the businesses across all industries and retail is at the center of this crisis. While a few have been positively affected, others have been groaning under its negative impacts. Beyond today’s immediate challenges faced by businesses, the longer this crisis persists, the more likely we are to see transformative and lasting changes in customer behavior and consequent impact on businesses.
Retailers need to stop expecting business to return to “normal.” Even before the Covid-19 pandemic and economic crisis, brick-and-mortar retailers had been fighting a fierce battle against e-commerce players. Those challenges have now accelerated at staggering speed. The latest data from McKinsey shows that consumers are likely to keep the behaviors they have adopted amid stay-at-home orders, such as more online shopping and fewer mall visits. Because of Covid-19, all retailers will have to give people a reason to visit their stores that is so compelling; it justifies their exposure to health risks and overcomes the inertia of the behaviors they adopted during the shutdown.
So, how will retail survive?
First, Retailers need to turn their attention to taking their customer experience to the next level. This includes compliance with COVID-19 protocol such as mask wearing, physical distancing, and controlling the number of employees and customers in stores, as well as instituting contactless transactions, improving speed of service, and introducing more self-service options.
Second, Retailers also need to offer a simple and seamless e-commerce experience — from browsing to researching, selecting, purchasing, and returning/exchanging. Retailers have to make sure their websites are mobile-responsive, offer integrated services and deliver a consistent, reliable experience across channels.
With a more proactive, progressive approach to both physical and digital transformation and a new era of customer experience and service, the future might look less bleary.
Join Brian Walker, CEO Retail Doctor Group as he takes a deep dive to explore core industry issues such as:
2020 debrief – how the global pandemic changed retail and consumer behavior forever and how the changes is consumer behaviours are affecting retail.
How should retail be responding? What options are out there that retailers can adopt to urgently transformation and set it on the path of guaranteed survival and growth?
Why professionalism, trust, experience and communication are in so much demand at every stage of the buyer journey and the role they play in customer acquisition and retention
Why eCommerce is now a priority for all retailers irrespective of size