Shops are closing down, onlineshopping is increasing. Is there really any reason to shop “in real life”?
Today I want to show you the wider persective of retail. -How retail should look like, in order to survive.
Once upon a time…
Once upon a time shopping was not for everyone. Shopping was only for the upper class and the rest had to dream about entering a shop.
At this time the shopping experience was truly something special. But as we all know, things have changed. Our economy has changed for the better and the amount of shops has more or less exploded. That sound good right? Yes, in the 90s it was, but then online shopping came = increased competition, and we had a financial crisis in the 00s. Today we have a more conscious consumer than ever before and we have a raised awareness of the negative effect of fashion and overconsumption.
Is retail over and out?
So what´s next? Is retail over and out? Yes, if we keep on as we do right now -consumers will use other options -such as online shopping. Today it is unfortunately very few who understands and respects the job as a shop employee. That means it is difficult to attract and find true talents. And yes, it is talent end expertise we need. Someone who has a high level of emotional intelligence and someone who is dedicated and has the right “geeky” mindset. They exist, but they are not easy to find… The reason why we, as consumers, should choose the physical shop instead of online shopping is because of the experience and the positive interaction with another human. If none of these motivation areas exist -there are no reason to move outside the door.
Some years ago I visited some shops and asked them about their online presence. They were all interesting shops and I wondered why they didn´t use online opportunies such as digital marketing, online shopping, Instagram etc. The answer was -“we dont have time…” Today most of these shops are closed down. What I would like to illustrate here, is the fact that we often think too small. We focus on the things in front of us instead of the bigger perspective.
If retail want to survive, we simply need to think bigger! And no, it is definitely not enough just to move products around! We have to change focus. And I will challenge you to remove your focus from the actual product. Why? Because when online shopping offers the same products as you do -at the same price, physical shopping is no longer about the product. It is about the experience, the eyecontact, the emotions and the magic.
Your product is a souvenir!
So ask yourself: If my product was a souvenir, would my customer buy it before leaving your store? Would he or she love to buy “the souvenir” as a memory of the great experience? Or would he/she leave empty-handed?
So what to do?
1.First of all you need to have less items in your shop. Remember the “jam-experiment”? It showed that we buy more, when we are exposed to less. Why? Because our brain hates too many options. H & M in Sweden are allready removing products to make room for experiences instead (nailsaloon and hairsaloon). Which leads me to the next….
2. Your shop should be about the experience!! So which kind of experience do you want to be? What would you offer if you had no products? Shops as La Diosa and beauty clinic Beauty Avenue (both in Copenhagen) are both much more than just a shop. They offer women circles, knowledge and fullmoon gatherings. The customer comes for the event and experience and the product becomes… a souvenir!
3. New research shows that 27% of women feel overwhelmed by the amount of things in their home and 19% feels bad about their consumption. This means that you have to offer something that gives the customer a good feeling afterwards.
4. Know the customer values! As a shop the most dangerous thing you can do is to isolate yourself. You have to be “outside oriented”; know how society develops and know the new consumer values. Right now our values move towards: Being present, helping your local society, being in nature, activism, family, the ability to relax, contemplation and health. None of the above mentioned reasons is: “I just want more stuff”!
Service info: I love retail! And I really, really want it to survive -and it will. We are still humans made out of flesh and blood, and that means we have a natural longing for meeting other people. We can´t survive without this interaction. So let´s make it better and let´s re-invent what retail is about 😉
Do you want a personal mini-lecture in your shop? Contact me via firstname.lastname@example.org