How you can overcome the proper storm that hits bodily shops
February 17, 2021 7 min read
This article was translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors can occur due to this process.
The opinions expressed by the entrepreneur’s contributors are their own.
No doubt the constant of business and entrepreneurship will always change. After many months of social isolation and working from home (and those that are absent), one change that we entrepreneurs need to consider very much is how buying behavior is changing brutally. especially in shopping malls and physical stores .
A shopping center is designed in such a way that the “anchor” stores generate a flow of people to specialty shops, boutiques and services in shopping centers in order to open your point of sale in one place until recently (location, location, location). was a choice that had relative certainty about predicting your company’s chances of success (especially with consumer problems).
Recently, the two major cinema chains in our country announced the permanent or temporary closure of many of their complexes. To give you an idea, the National Chamber of the Film Industry (CANACINE) reports that only between 38% and 53% of the available space is operational and the cash flow has been reduced to 3.6%. And while this part is not dedicated to my passion for cinephile (I went to the cinema five or six times in 2020), his financial and operational woes make me wonder what will happen in the big malls in the next few months.
Let’s think about it together when we go to the big malls. In most cases we do this for three reasons: go to an anchor store (department store or supermarket), a movie theater, casino or gym, or a restaurant; indirectly and thanks to this visit, we took the opportunity to go to a specialty shop or to have a daily intervention in your mobile phone company or simply to have a haircut, right?
But what happens to this large mall when the vast majority of stores have already been forced to expand their “omnichannel” strategy (selling through platforms or their own websites), closing cinemas and allowing restaurants to operate with limited hours and capacities? The perfect storm for physical retail .
It is precisely for this reason that I am devoting this article to entrepreneurs who already have a business or service in large shopping centers, or who are soon considering it. In my opinion, these are the most important points for your business plan in the immediate future:
1. Presence in digital media, and I’m not just talking about advertising; I just mean presence. Today, more than ever, it is critical that a consumer or service company be “hyperpublished”, that your business is geolocated on Google or Apple Maps with contact numbers, hours of operation, and more. Have social profiles, at least on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn. Very advisable to have WhatsApp or Telegram Business active and visited, etc.
Today, more than ever, it is VITAL for every consumer or service company to be “hyperpublished” / Image: Depositphotos.com
2. Omnichannel strategy. It sounds very nifty, but it’s nothing more than the ability to have alternative sales lines to your main channel. For example a physical store, you own home delivery services or via a platform such as Rappi or CornerShop , have your application or sell it in your own online shop or via Platforms like Amazon, Facebook or Mercado Libre. In the event your product wasn’t intended for mass consumption or service, I recommend considering virtual showrooms, online catalogs, and 360 videos to name a few ideas. In particular, the idea is that you need to provide your customer with alternatives that will allow them to NOT visit you.
3. Be unique. Now more than ever, your value proposition and differentiation is crucial to your success. Before a good price, the right quality and strategic location were enough to be successful. Currently, these attributes are standard and expected minimum, that is, if you do not have them or if you open your business. The value – from now on – has to do with these and other things, such as: practicality, speed, that there is a shopping experience (for example, the packaging of your product or the box you use for delivery makes a big one Difference).
4. Data mining. It is important that you imagine the importance of creating, managing and using your customers’ databases in order to return with them (buybacks with promotions) or encourage them to get to know you (follow up on contacts received) . Be a database of your customers and information about their behavior Not only can you sell more, but you can also spot trends like the days and hours when more staff need to be available, or simply look for other products to sell (extension of the briefcase).
5. Business model. Consider other business models in your plan for the immediate future. Some ideas for your business revolutions can be: monthly subscription models, prepaid or gift cards, Creation of alternative sales networks to physical business (commission sellers) or expanding services (compatible with your core business) or you can also revolutionize your marketing by trying to advertise with local micro-influencers.
The perfect physical retail storm is made even more complex by something we still don’t know will “mutate” in the months ahead. This uncertain factor lies in how our customers will change their buying behavior, ie that both our customer – when the desired normalcy returns – also return to their daily consumption habits and visit you in your store? How empty will the malls be? Which products do you prefer to consume without contact? Is it worth it to have smaller stores and consequently low operating costs?
These are questions that NOBODY has an answer to, but at least in my humble opinion, companies that are unwilling to accept the premise that “the world will not be the same” will certainly be much more at risk of extinction.