For retail businesses, an empty store means an empty bank account. If you own a brick-and-mortar business, you are probably on a never-ending quest to boost walk-ins and drive more sales. Even though a solid online presence is critical to the success of retailers, it’s necessary to not ignore the power of having a brick-and-mortar store.
Foot traffic or walk-ins is a critical measure when running a physical store. It represents the potential increase in sales revenue once the visitors are converted into paying customers. Basically, more foot traffic opens opportunities for customer engagement and sales, which results in higher revenues. Some businesses attract more walk-ins by organizing events and special promotions, while others attract buyers with beautiful landscaping through landscape designers and lawn installation services.
When increasing foot traffic, it is important to understand the target market and customer base. You have to find ways how to grab their attention to encourage them to enter. After all, new customers serve as the lifeblood of brick-and-mortar businesses. Your merchandising and displays should help them overcome any hesitation to shop in your store. With this in mind, here are some ways to increase walk-ins in your retail store.
Maintain a tidy storefront
First and foremost, a clean storefront adds wonders to the curb appeal. Your storefront is the reflection of the quality of your business, so it makes sense to keep it tidy and well-kept. No customer wants to enter a store with a filthy curb, outdated displays, and dirty windows, so make sure to keep up with the maintenance tasks.
Certain jobs such as cleaning the windows and sweeping the storefront should be a part of the daily routine, while other store improvements (e.g., paint job) can be done every couple of months or years. To evaluate the storefront appearance, step out of the store and look at its physical state, from the walks, doors, and windows. From there, you’ll have an idea of which parts need some sprucing up.
Level up your signage game
It’s never easy to make your business stand out in a busy location or a crowded marketplace filled with competitors. With so many eye-grabbing window displays, shoppers get easily distracted while others don’t bother looking at the windows. If this happens, consider applying additional elements to attract their attention.
The most affordable, effective, and simple way to do this is to use compelling signage. When we say compelling, you need something colorful, witty, and creative. Go beyond instead of simply hanging a “SALE” sign on the window or storefront.
Start by installing decent-sized signage right outside the door to promote your latest products or services. Another way is to choose signs to highlight current offers or promotions. But if you want to “literally” stop passersby in their tracks, a great tip is to add curbside elements. Instead of relying on window displays, leaving a sandwich board outside the door will do the trick.
What’s great about sandwich boards is they are cheaper and easy to set up. The challenge lies in how to make it look creative and eye-catching. Do this by writing a witty statement and using colored chalks for the design. Aside from boosting the curb appeal, sandwich boards are great social media content.
Keep up with the pop culture
Nothing keeps customers away from an outdated and stale store. If you want to increase foot traffic, add life to in-store displays and windows. Adding seasonal and trending elements in your displays will give passersby relevant reasons to give your store a look.
For instance, if students are preparing for the upcoming school season, the store visuals should reflect it by adding back-to-school designs and cutouts, such as pencils, notebooks, and blackboards. If the autumn season is in current swing, incorporate relevant themes, such as autumnal colors and falling leaves.
Another example is to take advantage of current events and pop culture. But before adding pop culture elements, make sure they are relevant to your target customers and products. Pop culture can be about the latest Netflix movie or a social media craze. To do that, make sure to have a prominent window display and special signage to let people know how your brand is keeping up with the latest cultural trend.
No matter the look or display, keep the displays on-brand and simple as possible. Often, store owners have a habit of overloading their windows with multiple promotions, off-brand fonts and colors, and random product assortment. This approach can be a confusing experience for customers, which can discourage them from walking into your storefront.
When looking for unique ways to encourage customers to enter your brick-and-mortar business, get creative. But before applying the strategies above, make sure you understand the customer base and have a good grasp of the market pulse. Having access to this information will give new opportunities to attract more walk-ins.