Monday, January 25 2021

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SafeX: Pointers for Brick-and-mortar Retailers

SafeX sounds like a spaceship company. But truth be told, the concept which surfaced in America as an answer to the pandemic could define if your retail business goes up or lose the foot traffic you desperately need.

Without a doubt, the retail business is in bad shape for months now. It’s crawling – and for some, the few trickle visits might have dried up faster than they wanted. It all looks surreal. But the facts remain. Many retail businesses have filed for bankruptcy ever since the virus happened. For one, apparel is down. Over 6,000 retail stores have closed in the middle of the year.

For sure, if you’re a brick-and-mortar retailer, then you’d likely be in limbo, a state of dilemma. Buyer confidence is down. They’d rather have someone deliver the goods right to their door, a notion that made billions for online stores such as Amazon (and made Jeff Bezos ultra-rich).

But making the most of SafeX can turnaround things for you. It should. We’re talking of not just any customer experience but safe customer experience (SafeX) in stores. The truth is that the expectations of customers have changed. After thousands of Americans dead, it’s a knee-jerk reaction.

According to a recent study, 86% of buyers are willing to pay more if the customer experience is good. At a time of confusion, banking on SafeX is the way to go. Quite simply, you can’t slack on this. That’s assuming your hell-bent on getting back your old customers who seemed to have forgotten the way to your door. And thrive despite the pandemic.

Above All Mind Your SafeX

First on your list should be setting things in order. And this would involve you making some hard decisions. Indeed, now is the time to implement key policies for your business. That includes streamlining your processes to improve revenue.

First off, you have to gauge your expenditure and income. So, since online retailing is now the new trend, you would have to shift costs to that area. Don’t argue the obvious. As people stay indoors, your online strategy should put you where the market is.

But don’t abandon your stores. Your goal for these brick-and-mortar stores should be optimizing operational efficiency while reducing costs. Think about areas that need more attention and those that are redundant. Focus your workers on those areas of your business that are giving you better returns.

As for the policies, safety rules are a must. All workers should ensure that they put on their masks and observe social distancing.

Explore no-contact payment options for customers. It is also important that you make sure the working environment is hygienic and conducive for working. The goal is to ensure the safety of both workers and customers. And that is what SafeX is all about.

Once your SafeX branding gets noticed, trust follows. And the increase in foot traffic should is just around the corner. Indeed, safe customer experience or SafeX is the new measure to gauge if your enterprise is worth the second visit.

Reevaluate Foot Traffic

People at the shopping mall

One thing that we are very sure of is that COVID has indeed affected retail traffic. In fact, it is said to have almost vanished since the start of the pandemic. But even at that, some retail stores have been coming quite well even during this pandemic.

Do some reevaluation. Is the reduced traffic only because of COVID-19? Or are there other reasons? One thing you need to look into is the location of the store. Many customers are not comfortable traveling down all the way to get something when they could order online.

For some customers, it’s because they don’t trust the safety that comes with the store. Take note that in times like this, SafeX is paramount. And that can mean your physical appearance too.

If the store looks dirty and untidy, then it reinforces the dread everyone has about the virus. So clean up if that’s the case.

A timely overhaul of your front yard can be most appreciated. In this regard, calling in professionals that do landscaping for commercial properties might be wise. Not only will you get to tell every customer how welcoming your retail store is with your well-maintained lawn, but you also tidy things up for the greater good.

If the location is the issue, you may have to deal with it in a better place. Restrategize. Rebuild. Studying customer behavior should give you a lift in this department.

Future-proof Your Stores

A key area you need to look into is that of improving your stores. You have to have a vision and get your store future-ready. Think in advance. If your stores can’t fit into the market in 3-5 years, you need to make some adjustments. The ball is in your hands.

How do you do that? By constant upgrading. Gone are the days of sticking to the old-school and expect things to come around. Doing that is insanity.

As today is the technology age, your store should ride with the times and be technologically advanced. You need a no-holds-barred, honest-to-goodness assessment of your strengths and weaknesses to do that. And factor SafeX in its essence. It can be the only way your enterprise will arrive whole in the future.

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