Although there has been a huge increase in the number of eCommerce stores online over the last few years, storefronts still play a vital role for retailers. Savvy store owners are using a combination of eCommerce and brick and mortar setups to deliver the ultimate customer experience. Storefronts are crucial in providing consumers with a personalised experience and giving buyers the opportunity to view your offerings in the flesh.
Combining eCommerce strategies with more traditional retail approaches offers both store owners and their customers the best of both worlds. Many brick and mortar stores offer click-and-collect services, in-store personal shopping experiences, alteration services and the opportunity to try before you buy. What’s more, shop assistants can answer any questions you might have in detail, allowing customers to make informed decisions before they buy. It can be difficult to offer these experiences in the online realm, meaning retailers need to find a solution that will satisfy the needs of the modern-day consumer who wants it all.
Let’s take a look at just a few reasons that storefronts are still vital in the current age of eCommerce.
Ensuring that your customers have the best possible in-store experience is crucial in converting them into returning, loyal customers in the long-term. You can install POS software to streamline the checkout experience, decrease customer waiting times and offer more ways to pay. Make sure to train your staff on how to deal with customer queries so they are knowledgeable and informative. To offer a great customer experience, use the space you have available in your store as well as you can to display your offerings, offer information and to market any special offers you might be running. It’s all but impossible to replicate the in-store experience in the online world but with a brick and mortar store, you can ensure that you leave a lasting positive impression on every customer you serve.
Try Before You Buy
Whether you are purchasing clothes, tools, makeup, technology or anything else, when you’re buying online, there is a certain disconnect from what you are buying. One of the biggest reasons that many consumers are hesitant to shop online is that they don’t feel they have the same come back with an online retailer as they do with a brick and mortar store. Consumers appreciate being able to look at a product in person before they decide to buy. How good the picture is on a new TV, the way those new jeans fit, or the actual colour of those throw pillows, are all easier to understand when you’re standing in front of the product you are looking at rather than looking at pictures on a screen.
With so many blogs, YouTube channels and customer review websites out there, consumers are more informed than ever before. However, there is nothing quite like speaking to a store assistant in person to have your questions answered properly. After all, no matter what it is you are buying, the staff in a brick and mortar store will have sold the item before and will also have knowledge of any issues that arise from returns that have been brought back to the store. With their advice, customers can make an informed decision before they buy.
Storefronts Will Continue To Play A Crucial Role
Despite the boom of eCommerce in recent years, physical storefronts are not going anywhere anytime soon. Brick and mortar stores provide retailers with an opportunity to connect with their customers in a meaningful, personal way and offer a totally different experience to what they will have online. To offer the complete package, retailers should consider combining their eCommerce setup with their storefront to give consumers the best of both worlds. With this approach, you will future-proof your business, gain more loyal customers and ultimately improve your bottom line as time goes on.