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How Retailers Can Profit from Showrooming with an Omni-Channel Strategy

Couple looking at item in store before buying online

Retailers really can control their own destiny. If showrooming is here to stay, then retailers need to embrace showrooming and find ways to profit off of it.

The key is to use an omni-channel retail strategy. Devise ideas and processes to get customers to purchase from you — period. Whether they walk out of the store with the product, have it delivered from the store or order online shouldn’t matter.

As a recent article on the LinkedIn website highlights, the future of retail is exciting. “The good old days of retail are in the future, not in the past,” writes retail industry adviser Daniel Burrus. But these changes do require retailers to reinvent their stores and embrace omni-channel retailing.

Take a look at Apple retail stores, for example. While customers can easily order Apple products online, shoppers still pack Apple retail locations. Why? Apple stores make the shopping experience fun and simple. The employees are engaged, the environment is inviting and the checkout process is easy.

Retailers don’t necessarily have to copy what Apple stores are doing. Rather, retailers must adapt to what Apple is doing, Burrus writes. Train employees to engage more with customers. When employees are excited, customers will feel that energy, thereby creating a welcoming environment. The bottom line is that if customers are going to make the effort to visit your store, you need to provide them with a great experience.

Sales associates must see themselves as advisers. Customers want personalized customer service that focuses on building relationships. Technology can help improve logistics and aid sales associates in finding what’s available in stores.

For instance, are your shelves so crowded that it’s hard to find anything? Maybe it is because you have too much inventory, or perhaps it’s time to organize your store with a storage room for the bulk of your inventory. Good internal systems should provide alerts as to when products are getting low and need to be restocked, which can help keep shelves appropriately and aesthetically stocked, while making it easy for customers to find and purchase products.

And in the end, that’s what retailers should be striving to provide — an easy, efficient and enjoyable shopping experience whether customers are shopping at your brick-and-mortar store or at your online store. An omni-channel strategy is vital to transforming retail and ensuring that the best days are yet to come.

Source: LinkedIn, August 2013