Top five things offline consumer electronic retailers need to do to compete with online

Footfall is one of the most essential measures when it comes to running a bricks-and-mortar store, traffic into store means more opportunities for sales and customer engagement, which in turn leads to revenue.

However, with the rapid increase in online shopping in the electronics market, particularly Amazon which is dominating the sector, consumer electronics retailers need to invest in fresh tactics to ensure that they can compete with the online competition.

Convenience is key

Speed and ease are two key qualities which define a successful shopping experience in the offline market. With online shopping allowing customers to purchase their goods at a click of a button, and Amazon even offering same day delivery with its ‘Amazon Prime’ service, consumer electronics retailers need to embody Amazon’s spirit of innovation in ordering and fulfilment in order to compete. They must ensure stock is available in store for customers to look at, try and take away that day, but also incorporate innovative digital elements to drive customers into store in the first place.

Blurred lines

The lines between online and offline are blurring more and more. Consumers want a unified retail experience that allows them to move smoothly across all of the channels – an omni-channel retail strategy, which provides customers with a fully-integrated shopping experience that unites their experiences from store to mobile browsing and everything in between.

Click and collect is an example of connecting online to offline, which is increasingly growing popular. The concept merges the convenience of e-commerce with the benefits of physical stores, attracting customers who want to know what’s in stock before they arrive and who don’t want to wait for deliveries. The Wall Street Journal reported that around 50% of shoppers opt for in-store pickup, 45% of whom also purchased something else during their visit to the physical store.

Mobile friendly

Mobile is an extremely important part of the modern day customer experience – it’s the glue between the digital and physical universe. Optimising mobile into a retail strategy is a crucial way to connect the online and offline experience as it allows customers to check store stock online and even use their mobile to pay for goods. Incorporating a mobile element within a retail strategy can also allow retailers to retain customers by using more personal targeting methods.

Getting personal  

Location-based technology, such as beacons to push personalised offers to mobiles, are a great way to connect with customers on a more personal level. The push notifications can welcome customers to store, prompt users to access discounts, or even offer suggestions for products they might like based on previous purchases. This way of reaching out to prospective customers at the right moment, through their preferred channel with customised messaging, is likely to lead to higher conversion rates.

Entertainment

Shopping experience has never been more important; the rise of social media now means shoppers share and broadcast messages about retailers publicly online. After all, the only way to justify a customer making a trip  in store is to give them an experience that online cannot – retailers who can provide unique in-store experiences will be more successful in increasing footfall to their store.

Engaging with customers by incorporating lifestyle elements into stores such as coffee shops or virtual reality experiences, can be a winning way to attract customers. Retailers should consider implementing Augmented Reality (AR) or Virtual Reality (VR) to transform the retail experience and connect the offline and online with more immersive experiences.

Check out how HMY converted an online experience into a physical store here.

If you’re looking for a retail specialist to help you evolve and improve the shopping experience for your customers contact us here: www.hmy-group.com/contact

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