by Rick Kroetsch
What differentiates you from online shopping? What is the difference that will give your customers a reason to come to your store versus clicking online and waiting for products to show up at their door?
The key binding agent that you can offer is enhanced customer experience and world-class customer engagement.
In cooking, binding agents are the ingredients that help keep a mixture together. Without the binding agent, the recipe falls apart. In business, you want to understand what binds your customer experience together to keep them engaged and coming back.
Elevate the customer’s engagement
Customers want to deal with experts who treat them as though they matter. Focus on personalizing their time with you. They want the trust and feeling that they are valued. Customers will appreciate the offline experience of coming to your store if they feel connected and listened to. Always remember that people buy from people they like, so make them like buying from you!
Become the subject matter experts
Your team offers a level of knowledge and experience that can’t be given with a click. Ensure that you are engaging everyone who walks in to determine their needs and goals. Don’t just ask what they are looking for today; find out more about them by asking open-ended questions. Knowing what brought them in today—as well as what motivates them—will help you offer solutions that will keep them customers for life.
Just offering products without also offering them your experience, engagement, knowledge, and personality will not result in growth. Let your customers know what they can expect when they shop with you. Your engagement with them and your ability to showcase your knowledge will lead to trust and commitment. They will continue to shop with you because they trust the people behind the products. Remember, customers can buy products without expertise anywhere.
It increases revenue
Being experts in your customer’s eyes increases customer satisfaction—as well as sales revenue. The more you understand why and how customers make their purchase decisions, the easier it will be to sell your value.
People are tired of being treated generically or as if “one size fits all.” If you assume everyone who comes into your store has the same needs and wants, you will fail to grow your sales. Your customers will feel they haven’t connected and will find a company that will make them feel wanted. Ask them the right questions, listen closely to what they tell you, and tailor your answers to meet their needs. The more you dig, the deeper you get. Get that information out of your customers for increased satisfaction.
It’s a connection economy
Customers don’t want to just connect online and on social media. They still need those personal connections—with someone who understand their needs. The more you engage, the more you connect—and the higher you increase your sales revenue.
Rick Kroetsch is the vice-president and associate publisher of Alive Publishing Group