Success in brick and mortar businesses is no walk in the park. While the internet boom and the movement to online shopping surely have something to do with the diminishing success rates of brick and mortar businesses, covid reaffirmed the notion that while many businesses can operate online, those that cannot and only operate as brick and mortar businesses are at the mercy of their local and federal mandates.
Which begs the question: how can your brick-and-mortar business succeed? Coming out of a pandemic where strict government mandates squandered the hopes and efforts of over 12,000 brick and mortar businesses, it may seem unfathomable that a brick and mortar business can succeed. But with the right tools and focus, a dedicated team, and a brand that speaks directly to the customer’s wants and needs, you’ll be off to a great start. Below, we go over 5 tips that if they are introduced and conducted correctly can help ensure success comes to your brick and mortar business.
Work With a Marketing Agency
Marketing agencies offer insight into practices that they’ve seen work for brick and mortar businesses. The hardest part of working with an agency is ensuring that they’re the right fit for you and your brick-and-mortar business. Be sure to conduct several interviews with different marketing agencies. Ask questions about their previous work and clients, how long their marketing campaigns last, and of course check that their pricing works with your business’s budget.
Be sure to choose a marketing agency that specializes in your industry, they’ll know the ins and outs of your market and what will work best for your brick and mortar marketing plan. For example, as a dental clinic, you wouldn’t want to work with a marketing agency that has a portfolio consisting of mostly real estate clients or no clear niche; instead, you’d want to speak with Dental Marketing Guy that have worked with businesses like yours before.
Create a Loyalty or Referral Program
Loyalty or referral programs are a great way to increase the success of your brick-and-mortar business. Programs such as these typically function in the same capacity across businesses, offering coupons, free items, or other perks to your customers for being loyal or referring friends to your business. Think about what your most loyal customers would appreciate the most, while also ensuring your program benefits your business model. Maybe you offer a monthly 10% off voucher, or you give $5 gift cards whenever a customer is referred to you by another customer.
Focus on what will make your customers happy while still encouraging them to come back through the door. Some loyalty programs host events for members in-store and encourage their loyalty program members to bring guests and mingle.
For instance, at Lululemon loyal customers can gather at the store on certain days of the week for runs led by one of the store’s employees. This encourages their already loyal customer base to include the store in their extracurricular activities and can even encourage purchases before or after the event. They know that their customers are exercise enthusiasts so incorporating an event like this was a perfect way to get more traffic.
Create Strong Social Media Presence
The unfortunate truth of the matter is that a strong social media presence is important regardless of where or how you’re running your business. Brick and mortars are no exception, and their websites are a pivotal source of information for interested clientele. Make sure you have your social media handles posted around your brick-and-mortar store. One way businesses have been successfully displaying these are on the front doors of their building, near wherever their business hours are located.
Offer Top-Notch Customer Service
Customer service wins customers. 96% of consumers reported to Hubspot that good customer service is important in determining how loyal they are to a brand. Prioritize the training of your customer service team and ensure your hiring process fits the needs of your brick-and-mortar business.
Nordstrom, founded in 1901, has one of the most well-known, “the customer is always right” styles of customer service and they attribute their success to it. They emphasize treating their customers’ returns with the same excitement as a purchase and make the interactions smooth and painless for their customers. If your customer service team is trained properly, they’ll be able to represent your brand to the best of their ability and provide the best experience for your customers.
Focus On Community Outreach
Community outreach is pivotal in the success of a brick-and-mortar business. Look into joining local small business boards, where you can get to know other business owners and see if there are any types of collaborations you can do together to help boost visibility in the local business market.
Farmers’ markets, holiday bazaars, and other town get-togethers are great venues for spreading your name, look into renting a booth or handing out flyers with coupons to encourage more foot traffic from local community members. The community around your brick and mortar can be its lifeline, but only if the community knows that your brick and mortar is there.