It sounds simple enough: The main goal of a retailer is to get the tills – virtual or otherwise – ringing; cash exchanging hands, goods being taken away to a loving new home; converting browsers into buyers.
But with consumers becoming increasingly savvy, money conscious, and less impulsive with their purchases; it’s not as easy as it once was to boost those sales margins.
Bricks, clicks, and everything in between
In both physical and online retail, the challenge of converting browsers into buyers can seem like a complicated one. In reality though, there are a number of simple tips and tricks, tools and techniques you can use to increase your conversion rate.
Despite doom-and-gloom figures, customers are still shopping. While the motivation might be different, the need to fill a certain goal is still there. And as the retailer, it is your job to provide a solution to this goal.
Provide a good enough solution, in a clear and cohesive manner; and you’re well on your way to securing a sale. But what does this mean in reality, and how can this be put into practice by online and offline retailers?
Here, are five ways you can turn retail browsers into buyers:
1. First impressions count
Whether you’re running an ecommerce website or a physical store; looks matter.
You only have a few seconds – even less if you’re online – to capture a customers’ attention and convince them to delve deeper into your offering. If you fail to nail the first impression, browsers are even less likely to buy.
In a physical store, there are a number of retail design secrets that can help you boost conversions such as hero product presentation and mobile integration. For ecommerce retailers, it is all about the design of your website.
By projecting a positive first impression, customers will shop with a positive, open mind thus making them more likely to part with their cash.
2. Focus on multi channel retailing
One of the main reasons you’re failing to convert browsers into buyers is because you’re failing to grasp multi channel retailing.
If you are running both an online and offline store, you shouldn’t view them as separate entities. You should manage them as a seamless, integrated experience. By giving customers the same experience across all channels, they are much more likely to make a purchase.
More and more customers are either ‘showrooming’ or ‘reverse showrooming’. This is the act of either research a product in store and buying online, or browsing online and buying in store. By making this easy for your customers and delivering the same brand experience across both; you can capitalise on these sales and convert browsers into buyers.
3. Clarify your offering
As the lines of retail become more blurred and retailers change up their offering, it is important that you clarify exactly what it is you sell.
This might sound simple enough; but if someone who has never heard of your brand before walks into your store or clicks onto your website, would they know immediately what it is you do? If they don’t, does the look and feel of your site/store encourage them to find out more?
Customers are much more likely to convert when they know who you are, what you do, and why they should buy from you. Don’t assume they know: lay everything out in black and white and let your customers make up their own minds.
4. Loyalty programmes
With cash tighter than ever before, many shoppers are trying to find ways to cut the price of even vital purchases.
By offering online and offline loyalty schemes, it is possible to boost the number of clicks that become sales. Whether you offer a free gift after so many purchases, money off, or access to special discounts; loyalty schemes make customers feel part of your brand.
This inclusive offering will naturally make customers want to spend, as will the incentive of a freebie at the end. When customers are only a few points away from a free gift, they are more likely to spend a little extra in order to bag the goodies.
5. Create urgency
Flash sales, 50% off discounts, and limited time offers are all great ways to turn browsers into buyers. Online especially, customers are much more likely to make a purchase when they feel they’re getting something for less.
This is a tried and tested technique for boosting sales, but make sure you do only run the offer for a limited time.
You can capitalise on this – even in physical stores – by sending out eshots, posting on social media, and even through direct mail. If the deal is good enough to get them through the door, chances are they will convert and buy.
Turning retail browsers into buyers isn’t always easy. But by following these tips, you can encourage both online and offline shoppers to part with their cash and buy into your brand.