The rules of retailing are changing. There is a tough new consumer -- they are demanding more and getting it.
The key to success is to be able to adjust to the changing business environment faster than your competition.

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Power-driven Retailing

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Cutting Edge Solutions for Creating A Successful Sale Event
by Bob Nelson

The rules of retailing are changing. There is a tough new consumer -- they are demanding more and getting it. The key to success is to be able to adjust to the changing business environment faster than your competition.

The new millenium has brought dramatic changes to the retail industry. Not since the population exodus from the cities in the 60's have retailers experienced such change. Bad enough were the malls of the 80s and 90s, now there is a new intrusion... the national discounter.

In today's explosive marketplace, with skyrocketing expenses and stagnant revenues even well managed retailers find it a big problem to produce bottom line profits...

No customers = no cash flow!
It doesn't matter how great your products are, or how wonderful your service is -- If you don't have customers, all you have is inventory with fixtures and a business. . . with no cash flow.

In the uphill battle to generate more sales the winner is not always the biggest -- but the most resourceful. The most important "survival skill" is to be able to anticipate change and identify new money-making opportunities. Small retailers can fight back by updating their overall marketing strategy -- refocusing on items, price, and efficiency, and by countering with lots of in-store celebrations, glamour and fun.

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The purpose of your business is to bring in customers, and it can only be achieved through special marketing skills. If your cash registers don't ring, something is wrong and you had better find out what is wrong fast, because getting results is what counts.

Three ways to make your business grow
There are just three ways to make your business grow:

  • You can find new customers.
  • You can increase your average sales transaction.
  • You can give customers more opportunities to buy more frequently from your business.

Improving any of these three categories will boost your sales. But, the moment you decide that you're going to systematically improve all three categories together, you'll catapult your business three-fold.

That's why a "Big Volume Sale Event" is the best way to boost sales and win your customers back. The main requirement is to have an effective Marketing Plan: the elements that address the essential sales-building tools and techniques to attract customers and make your cash registers ring...

Direct Mail
Develop your own customer mailing list. If you want to boost sales while you drive down costs, then you should be using direct mail. It is one of the most targeted, measurable and cost-effective ways to sell your products and services. Experience shows that retailers who have a current customer list receive the best results. Remember, it is better to have 500 to 2,000 qualified names rather than 5,000 to 10,000 non-qualified names.

Effective Media Advertising
Newspapers: This is a valuable medium for your particular sale campaign. Ads can be placed and/or changed on relatively short notice allowing you to design a last-minute ad as your sale goes through its different phases. You can adjust percentages, stock selection, and other special points relating to your type of sale.

Radio & Television: Some of the advantages of radio and television are: flexibility, wider reach and frequency, and providing an "Act Now" urgency. Seek out the stations in your area and decide which will best appeal to your target market.

High Impact Signage
The purpose of your "SALE" signs are to attract attention and convey the feeling of an exciting and vibrant sale event from start to finish. The more signs you use the more your store will appear to be different and attract new customers. Your signs should be attention-getting and to the point as they will give your customers the perception of a huge sale event -- offering fantastic values.

Value Pricing
While there are many ingredients for successful retailing, price is probably the most important influence on consumer buying. You will sell your merchandise in direct proportion to the values you pass on to your customers. Your inventory is not like fine wine; it does not get better with age. So, don't "fall in love" with your merchandise. Customers buy because of a self-serving benefit that your service provides for them. It is called -- WIIFM (What's in it for me?) It is not the customers' concern why you are in business. People don't care if you need to make payroll, or even if you have a hundred different diplomas or come from the best family in town. They only buy from you because of a benefit.

  1. What benefits do you offer?
  2. What are you doing better than your competition?
  3. What are they doing better than you?
  4. Do you pay attention how your competition price their products?
  5. Can your customers easily obtain a product as good or better somewhere else?

In retailing, the trick is to know your competition... your customers do. To survive and prosper in today's competitive markets, retailers must develop more efficient operational and marketing skills. Stores wedded to the "old ways" of doing things are almost sure to fail.

And finally, you should never hesitate to hire an outside expert with specialized knowledge and skills. Whether it be computer service, free lance artist, advertising agency, or retail consultant -- to make your business more effective, productive, and profitable. It can make a big difference!

For more information, visit POWER Retailing's Award Winning Web Site: http://www.retailing.com -- or contact Bob Nelson (email:bnelson@retailing.com) at (602) 460-1965. POWER Retailing 1859 E. South Fork Dr. Phoenix, AZ 85048


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