Is your business threatened by online stores? If YES, here are 50 best ways brick and mortar businesses can adapt and win competition from ecommerce stores.
Every year, we hear about the increasing popularity of online stores, and as they continue to grow, the rumor of the death of brick-and-mortar stores continues to grow with it. However, is this true? Although there is some validity to their arguments, brick-and-mortar stores aren’t going to dissipate if they are able to adapt.
The fact still remains that eCommerce stores account for just 8.1% of total retail sales in North America in 2016, and sales are projected to grow with the coming years. This percentage shows that as of present, brick and mortar businesses currently hold economic power, but they are losing traction quickly.
In order for brick-and-mortar businesses to keep their footing, there are adaptations they can make them stay strong in their market and beat out their online-only competition.
50 Best Ways Brick and Mortar Businesses Can Adapt and Win Competition from eCommerce Stores
1. Better customer service: when it comes to the issues of customer service, brick and mortar businesses seem to have an edge over their ecommerce counterparts. For instance, if you have a question about a product that you see in a store, it is a lot easier to ask a salesperson in the store.
Getting advice online can be froth with difficulties. It goes without saying that your employees have to be readily available and knowledgeable to help a shopper in the store, but more retailers seem to be coming to this conclusion and investing in customer service.
Stores like Best Buy recognized and exploited this opportunity, by prioritizing advice and making it easy for customers to understand technology. Other retailers like Wal-Mart and Target have followed suit by increasing salary and improving training in order to deliver better customer service. As a result, same-store sales and traffic have improved.
2. Buy online/pick up in store (BOLPUS): these days, some retailers offer their customers the ability to pick up products that they purchased online in the store. Like improving customer service, offering BOLPUS is a way for brick-and-mortar retailers to leverage their stores by doing something online retailers can’t.
Allowing in-store pick-up gives customers the opportunity to shop conveniently from home and pick up an item in the store the same day, and it helps retailers save money on expensive shipping costs.
Retailers like Wal-Mart and Kroger have taken the strategy to the next level by building separate stations for online grocery pick-up where customers simply pull up and get their orders put into their cars by a store employee. You can implement this strategy in your brick and mortar business in order to withstand competition from ecommerce stores.
3. Making checkout easier: a lot of people find the grueling process of checkout very frustrating in their shopping. After you have found what you want to buy, you still have to wait in a queue for some minutes before you can make payments and then leave the store.
If a brick and mortar business can find a way to ameliorate this undesirable situation, then they can have a real competitive advantage. For instance, Amazon Gostore allows customers to pluck items off the shelves and walk out of the store, charging them automatically after they scan an app on entry.
4. The treasure hunt effect: one of the things that make shopping exciting can be finding the unexpected, or the so-called treasure hunt effect. As such, it is advisable to constantly rotate merchandise so that your customers will always see something new when they come to buy from your store.
In addition, it incentivizes customers to buy something if they see an item they like as it may not be back in the store again. Store like TJ Maxx and Costco have been known to constantly make use to this. The treasure hunt is also a difficult model to emulate online, which doesn’t lend itself to discovery well, so it helps drive traffic to stores and provides a buffer against ecommerce.
5. Fight back online: having a brick and mortar business model does not mean that a store cannot embrace ecommerce (at least to some extent). This means that the website needs to be easy to use and offer a seamless checkout.
Brick-and-mortar retailers need to borrow from Amazon’s online pricing tactics as the company has gained a perception as the lowest-price operator thanks to discounting popular items. On less desirable goods, however, the company tends to charge higher prices. Amazon uses bots to constantly update prices according to inventory levels and competitor prices, and brick-and-mortar retailers would be smart to do the same.
Setting up an online shop is easier than ever, allowing shoppers to search and compare what products you offer against your competitor. Creating an online store is also very easy. Many cloud-based solutions provide templates, drag-and-drop interfaces, and other tools to make it incredibly simple to set up an ecommerce site.
By running an ecommerce component to your business, you’re catering to web-savvy shoppers. By having a brick-and-mortar store, customers can pick up the item they want immediately without having to wait for shipping and delivery.
It is also very important to be mobile-friendly. This is because; research has found out that more than 50% of Millennial shoppers would rather use a Smartphone to make purchases than any other method. According to a Google study, local searches via a Smartphone lead to 50 percent of consumers visiting a store within one day, and nearly 18 percent of those people ultimately make in-store purchases!
Thanks to location tools, Google helps the process by making it easy for customers to type “near me” into a Smartphone search, which provides consumers with results in the immediate area. Google also has a local inventory ad service, where retailers can pay to advertise their local inventory online. When consumers click your listing, they arrive at a local “storefront” to view information on the product and get directions to your store.
It is also estimated that by the year 2020, 80% of the global population will own a Smartphone, which means companies should be seriously investing in mobile and omni-channel strategies.
However, you should learn how to find a perfect balance between you brick and mortar store and your ecommerce store. For instance Warby Parker is a retailer that has perfected the balance between its retail channels. It started as an online-only provider of prescription eyeglasses.
Today, it has perfected the brick-and-mortar store experience and now operates nearly 50 stores that enable shoppers to try on frames in person. Renowned for exceptional customer service with well-trained and highly knowledgeable sales associates, Warby Parker planned to open 25 new stores last year at a time when many retailers were closing shops.
6. Sync Your Online and Offline Efforts: At the end of the day, you want to sync your efforts online and in-store. If you are offering a discount online, make sure it’s happening in the store, too. If a customer sees the product for sale online, but you won’t match the price in-store, or vice-versa, you are missing an opportunity to create a lasting client relationship.
Creating a consistent and helpful environment for customers is very important. All it takes is one poor customer service experience to make a bad impression that a client will always remember.
7. Offer additional In-store service: another good way by which brick and mortar stores can adapt and withstand competition from ecommerce stores is by offering more in-store services. For instance, if you are a business driven business, you can offer your customer to try some products for free. This is quite impossible for an ecommerce store to do.
8. Make your store to be experience-rich: these days, the purpose of brick and mortar business has gone far beyond having inventory. Granted, it is still very important and converting browsers into buyers should always be the main goal, but how retailers get to the end result is changing.
Brick-and-mortar retailers need to offer so much more than “stuff.” Shoppers want engaging and personalized in-store experiences, ones that go beyond the traditional retail space. A growing number of major retailers have started offering complimentary workshops and classes to clientele. For instance, Nike offers running, yoga, and fitness classes at select locations as a way to build brand awareness and loyalty.
According to a Marketing Land article, Urban Outfitters recently began adding bars and restaurants to a number of stores to give Millennial customers another way to engage with their brands. At Williams-Sonoma, customers can sign up for in-store cooking classes, and bookstores regularly attract clientele to shops by offering author readings and book signings.
Brands need to meet customer demand for connected devices, offer options such as home delivery packages and create personalized marketing experiences across all online platforms and brick-and-mortar stores. In order to keep customers coming back and attract new ones, a little outside the box thinking and offering your customers more immersive, memorable experiences will go a long.
9. Pop-up shops: Pop-up shops are another innovative way to attract customers to your store for an experience they wouldn’t find online or at any other retailer. Pop-up shops are temporary, short-term retail events that have been a growing industry, accounting for approximately $10 billion in sales, according to PopUp Republic. Large companies such as Nordstrom, Amazon, and Best Buy have all started hosting pop-ups as a way to increase brand awareness and draw customers in store.
When it comes to brick-and-mortar retailers, hosting a pop-up shop at your store not only creates a unique and limited experience for clientele, allowing you to potentially attract new customers, but helps you test out new revenue streams and develop relationships with other retailers in your community. Consider partnering with another business selling complementary products or items with a similar aesthetic.
10. Offer Personalized Shopping: in order to ensure customer retention, brick and mortar stores should strive to personalize shopping experience. One way to do this is by offering tailored shopping experiences or personal shopping services. Another method is to truly hone in on who you’re trying to target as your clients and build a shop curetted specifically to them.
An example of a brand that has been able to do this is Bonobos (a company that sells men’s apparels). To increase business and attract new customers, the company launched Guide Shop, a brick-and-mortar shopping experience in select cities across the United States.
The catch, however, was that at these Guide Shops, customers could try on clothing, but wouldn’t actually leave the store with anything in hand. Rather, once clothing was fitted and chosen, orders were placed online for home delivery.
According to an article in the Guardian, this supported the brand’s research that men wanted to shop in stores but didn’t actually want to leave carrying shopping bags. In return, store staff didn’t have to worry so much about inventory and could instead focus on customer experience.
11. Utilize Technology as a Tool: these days, customers are more tech-savvy than ever before and so it comes as no surprise that ecommerce is gaining increased popularity due to the fact that people are becoming more comfortable with the digital world.
In order to survive, brick-and-mortar retailers must start incorporating digital elements into the in-person shopping experience. According to an Engadget article, some of these elements might include the following:
- Creating kiosks with digital screens that display personalized content to shoppers
- Offering digital concierges that greet customers and offer recommendations and information about special offers
- Sending coupons and other sales information directly to customers’ smart phones
- Having cloud-based POS systems that enable employees to process transactions anywhere in store as opposed to traditional stationary cash registers
Other techs that are expected to gain increased popularity amongst offline retailers include; beacons, which are set up at entrances of stores and send customers coupons, customized messages, and product recommendations via Bluetooth. Shoppers can also opt to have their data collected by stores, allowing businesses to further understand their customers.
Radio frequency identification, or RFID, is also useful to retailers and shoppers alike as an easy way to track inventory digitally. According to Engadget, some Ralph Lauren stores have the technology enabled in fitting rooms so that customers can instantly check for other sizes and colors of like items.
Augmented and virtual reality as well as wearable tech is already popular in the gaming and entertainment industries. It’s only a matter of time before shoppers expect to see their retail experience transformed with this technology.
Augmented reality may assist customers in navigating through larger stores or provide additional product information, while virtual reality can allow shoppers to seamlessly experience and “test” products before purchasing them. Technology enables a smoother, more personalized experience for shoppers in store, and in return, helps retailers understand their customers and provide a better experience.
12. Give your business a human face: naturally, human beings are social animals. We like to interact with other people, receive personalized recommendations, and enjoy excellent customer service. Like it was mentioned previously, ecommerce businesses lack something that brick and mortar store have; a human face.
Therefore, it is worth investing in your sales staff — the people who are there to greet your customers, provide information, and make suggestions while delivering seamless, top-notch service. It’s something not even artificial intelligence can ever truly replace.
According to Marketing magazine, Millennial shoppers are reshaping how the retail industry engages with young shoppers. Millennials are interested in learning about a company, the stories behind products, and are far more likely to make a purchase when this information is readily available. Empowering your sales associates with information not only about your company and product history, but of its values as well, is key to future-proofing your brick-and-mortar retail space.
13. Use localized search engine optimization to drive your online visitors to your physical stores: these days, every business needs a website. A lot of customers first try to find information about a store in their areas by searching the internet.
Using search engine marketing means not just having a website, but also ensuring that the content on the site contains relevant keywords, key phrases and localized information so that search engines can find your site and return it in the list of results to a consumer’s search query.
In the age of instant gratification, you can actually beat online retailers by providing a same day product receipt vs. the typical one to five days sales completion lifecycle online retailers have to deal with due to shipping times.
It’s especially important that your site prominently features information about where your store is located. This increases the odds that your page will rank higher in the search engine rankings when mobile users look up information while they’re close to one of your brick-and-mortar stores.
Local searches via a Smartphone lead to 50 percent of consumers visiting a store within one day, and nearly 18 percent of those store visits result in a purchase, according to a Google study. To put it mildly, localized search engine optimization isn’t just an option — it’s a necessity.
14. Use social media to build customer relationship: these days, customers don’t just need good prices, they also need a rewarding shopping experience and as such, it is very vital to create a social media presence and engage your target market. However, you should not just make posts because you feel that you ought to post something.
The information you share should be relevant, timely, including community/customer content; ask questions, start discussions, et al. All of these will get your customers more involved and increase your brand awareness. What’s more, a consistent social media strategy will encourage them to do a lot of the work for you by sharing posts and getting others involved.
Even small businesses with a large social media presence can compete with large online retailers because the power of local social networks will bring new customers or retain existing ones with constant, easy reminders of quick-to-access stores.
15. Get more competitive with a robust marketing mix: this does not necessarily translate into increasing your marketing budget. It means that you need to market smarter by combining traditional methods with digital marketing.
You should use a variety of marketing channels to get your customers to come back, through automated email campaigns or pay-per-click retargeting campaigns if they haven’t been in the store recently or to reward them for being great customers. Just remember to collect robust data on your customers so that you know who, how and when to activate them.
16. Leverage reviews and testimonials to show customers how awesome you are: these days, customers are very involved in the purchasing process, many like to give reviews of products or testimonials of a business. Reinforce reviews early and often, and post the best reviews and testimonials in areas that others can easily see, so that they can influence the next consumer decision. Last but not least, address negative reviews with positive actions vs. negative reactions
17. Emails: if you are not already collecting emails from your customers, then you should start right away and send them weekly newsletter with specials, related news, featured items new to the store et al.
Email still remains one of the most popular ways by which people interact with one another online and as such, you should take full advantage of it. There are a great many email marketing applications that will make producing and sending a newsletter to your customers simple. There are two rules to follow when sending out email newsletters to keep your customers happy:
- Always use an opt-in system for building your list.
- Don’t deluge them. Sending out regular updates is important to build community and keep your customers in the loop but that doesn’t mean you have to send them an email newsletter every day.
18. Give people extra reasons to come to your store rather than shopping online: in a scenario where your small business is selling something from a brick and mortar location, and there are other small businesses selling the same thing online, you ought to ask yourself why a customer should bother to get into their vehicle (or take public transport) and make the drive to your store when they can easily get the same thing with just a click of a mouse? Your main selling point should not just be that your items are cheaper because a lot of people will be willing to pay a little more money for convenience.
Give them other better reasons to shop at your brick and mortar business such as the fact that you donate part of the proceeds on every purchase to charity, instant entry into a prize draw, long-standing support of a local cause, a cool event, a customer loyalty card – something to make them feel the trip is worth it.
19. Be the locally connected business of choice: to compete with those online businesses that are cutting in to your bottom line, make sure you’re the locally connected small business of choice. Join groups where your customers are hanging out. Volunteer if you can. Make sure that you also join local business organizations. The referrals you hear about are always just the tip of the iceberg.
20. Price matching: before, show rooming was a big concern to brick and mortar retailers. Customer would just visit a store to test the products for themselves to learn more about the item but instead of making a purchase in the store, they place an order online in order to get better bargains.
Chains like Best Buy, which sell items that are readily available in other stores and online, realized that they would have to price-match ecommerce store in order to convince customers to buy items once they were already in their stores. Otherwise, they would continue losing out to their online competitors.
Price matching is a common tactic that brick-and-mortar stores use to convert customers who’d otherwise shop online. It’s a decent strategy, but it can also kill your profits. That’s why you need to be more creative when pricing products and crafting promotions.
20. Differentiate: like it was mention before, it is very important to give your customers a good reason to come to you instead of going to patronize your rivals. Your USP should tap into what customers want and it should be clear and obvious – no-one should have to ask what makes you different.
21. Update your image: little things like painting the front of your premises can make your business look more modern and inviting. In addition you should also look into your business cards, social media presences, your website , branded packaging, clothing and so on. Does your image reflect your USP?
22. Guard your existing customers jealously: your customers constitute the target market of ecommerce stores and as such you should provide better customer service by being more responsive to their needs and expectations. If feasible, consider offering low-cost extras such as improved credit terms, discounts or loyalty schemes – remember, it’s cheaper and easier to keep customers than to find new ones.
23. Target new markets: Selling into a greater number of markets can increase your customer base and spread your risk. Or instance, you should consider selling online or overseas. Are there groups you’ve never targeted before who might be interested in your offer? Remember the benefits of market segmentation and don’t waste time marketing to people who won’t be interested.
24. Be the best employer: Skilled, motivated staff underpins vibrant, growing businesses. But attracting these calibers of staff means more than paying a competitive wage – people are often more impressed by a good working atmosphere and benefits such as flexible working and structured career development.
25. Demonstrate a willingness to break “business as usual”: Test new things and keep testing in your market for things that work. There is no magic, and things change so fast that you can’t count on things that worked for you in the past. Companies that are constantly looking forward, rather than backward, are going to be victorious.
26. Look for growth in emerging global market geographies: instead of saturating your coverage of a single geography, use technology and the low cost of global manufacturing to cherry-pick new opportunities. There will always be markets where the culture, income levels, or the products don’t lend themselves to online.
27. Build a community with face-to-face between customers: Smart brick and mortar businesses sponsor live events, peer-help sessions, and customer demonstrations with the intention to create great experiences and opportunities for people to feel close to others. Perhaps they need to add a coffee bar, or other entertainment options.
The best time to start this for a new business would be in the beginning, when you can set the right team culture, and before biases are set. For existing businesses, it’s harder. You have to break things, change people, and build some new habits yourself to be the right role model.
28. Sell Products That are not easily sourced online: Dollar General is an example of a retailer that has been able to succeed with its many brick and mortar stores around the country. The dollar store chain sells inexpensive merchandise that Amazon and most ecommerce stores can’t sell because it wouldn’t make money on the items due to the shipping costs. Costco is another retailer that succeeds because shoppers can buy in bulk at ultra-low prices. Last but not least, Home Depot sells products that are too big or cumbersome for Amazon to ship.
29. Bluetooth Beacon Technology: this innovative technology is something that most customers haven’t experienced before. With a Bluetooth beacon technology, your beacon will be able to pick up when a customer is near your store by detecting their phone. You will then be able to set some balls in motion in order to entice them to come to your shop.
For instance, you could automatically send someone a 15 percent discount code to entice them inside. It’s likely you have your own online store, so you can remind people if they have a product in their cart. If you have a large store you can even guide them directly to it.
30. Modern Point of Sale Software: a lot of customer will be more than surprised if they should walk into your store and you still use old school cash registers or credit card machines without a chip. Subconsciously, they will think that you are out-dated and millennial shoppers are more likely to buy things using their phone. In order to compete favorably with ecommerce store you have to upgrade your point of sale solution to something like Stripe.
31. Targeting Customers with Ads: Even though your business is primarily a brick and mortar store that does not mean that you cannot benefit from online ads. Facebook Dark Posts have created many millionaires since their inception and they’re going to create a lot more. Think about all the other social media platforms at your fingertips.
Before you go all in, you should learn to test any ad platform where you can target people in your local area. Software like AcuityAds helps you focus on engagement when it’s hard to track your ROI from an online ad to an offline purchase. When Apple Pay and other similar payment systems become main stream this problem will be reduced.
32. Start Using Augmented Reality: one day, augmented reality will become main stream on the internet and it will cause great damage to offline stores. When online giants open retail stores you can guarantee they’ll be experts in using the technology to get exactly what they want from their customers.
You’ll need to follow in the footsteps of brands like Gap, IKEA, and Adidas to prevent yourself from fading away. It could be something as simple as Lego used over half a decade ago. They had a screen where customers could see the completed Lego set when they held a box in front of it.
33. Don’t Let Them Take Everything: Online businesses have greatly increased in popularity since the internet increased in use, but you don’t need to let them take everything. The only way you’ll be able to keep your business relevant is with the newest technologies becoming available every day.
34. Emphasize speed and convenience: when people buy goods online, they have to wait for a couple of days (or pay heavily for faster shipping) in order to get their order. As a brick and mortar merchant, you can use this to your advantage by highlighting your ability to provide instant gratification to customers. When communicating with shoppers, emphasize the fact that they can walk out of your store with their items instead of having to wait or pay for shipping.
When selling speed and convenience, it’s best to market to those who are right in your neighborhood. Use the various marketing tactics that are at your disposal to make people in your locality more aware about your company and update your online presence so customers can easily find your store during the research phase of the purchase process.
35. Be flexible with payments: brick and mortar stores that are flexible with payments can lure customers away from online sites. For instance, Best Buy’s credit card, allows customers to pay off their balance over 18 months interest-free. As a startup owner, this is extremely beneficial because cash flow is limited for a startup company.
This however does not mean that you should start offering credit cards to your customers. However, you may want to consider being more flexible with payments. If it makes sense for your business, why not look into partial payments, split payments, and layaways? Giving shoppers more options for how they pay could be just the thing that sets you apart from your competitors.
36. Work with your vendors: you should work closely with your vendors to determine if you can get goods at a cheaper cost. For instance, would you be able to get a better bargain if you reached a certain quantity threshold? Or maybe there are middlemen or administrative costs that you can eliminate from the process.
Another option would be to consolidate orders for other items or with other buyers. Walmart did something similar a few years back when it sought other buying partners to lower its cost of goods.
37. Customize offers: You wouldn’t want to give too big of a discount to a shopper who would purchase an item at a higher rate. So rather than offering blanket discounts, segment your buyers and send them tailored promotions based on their shopping behavior.
38. Advertise in Your Community: almost every online store is geared towards selling to a national audience, however they have a limited ability to target a local community. Brick-and-mortar stores have the advantage of being able to use traditional marketing such as local signage, targeted mail or postcard campaigns, or even well-placed, inexpensive flyers or door hangers to advertise their business.
Local stores can also gain advantages by being involved in the community, be it the local chamber of commerce, school board, or even church groups. If you can establish connections in your community, word-of-mouth can be very powerful in increasing foot traffic.
39. Get Listed in Review Sites and Social Media: make sure that your brick and mortar business is listed online with local review sites such as Yelp and Google Reviews. Monitor all reviews, and address any negative ones as soon as you see them with positive actions. When customers express praise for what you do or sell, encourage them to leave positive reviews online. This can go a long way to creating buzz and making sure online searchers end up in your store.
40. Make the Physical Space Appealing: all brick and mortar businesses cannot be located in classy, luxurious shoppers’ paradise, and they don’t need to be. They key is to keep your storefront clean, in good shape and easy to identify with the proper signs.
This will go a long way to make people feel good about entering your store. Adding a few “extras” outside, such as a sandwich board with the day’s specials, or appealing decorations in your windows, can also provide an added boost to get people through the door.
Once inside, make sure your customers feel important and at ease. When they are greeted by friendly staff and can easily locate quality products that meet their needs, visitors are more likely to purchase goods in your store.
Engage each of the five senses to create a positive feeling and make customers more likely to remember and share their experience. While appealing to their sense of sight, make sure customers can easily find the products they want with appropriate signs and an organized store layout.
You can also have some cool music in the background that will most likely appeal to your target customers in order to engage their sense of sound. You should also make sure that you business premises smell good. Invite people to activate their sense of touch by offering products out of the box that they can touch. Finally, consider leaving food or drink samples that people can take and taste.
41. Analyze and understand your customer: there is an old saying that the customer is always right and this saying still holds true today. Today’s customers are extremely savvy, using technology-enabled behaviors such as “show rooming” — the act of examining a product in a store, then purchasing it online from another outlet — to ensure the best deals. According to the Cisco report, 39 per cent of respondents said efficiency in the shopping experience (ensuring items are in stock, expediting checkout times) was the area retailers need to improve on the most.
By using analytics-based technologies, retailers can better define and respond to consumer needs. This can involve analytics-driven technologies that track customer behavior inside and outside of a store — all with the aim of dynamically providing the experience that best suits that context. Retailers that build agile business processes to turn these insights into value can capture a profit improvement of 15.6 per cent, the study found.
43. Offer enticing extras: even though some brick and mortar stores may battle with space constraints, you should consider carving out a lounge section of your store for customers to sit and relax. You should ensure that this area matched the theme of you store or how customers would normally engage with your products. For example, set the area as a living room with a TV if you offer home products or as a campground if you offer outdoors equipment.
Free Wi-Fi is also an extra that is greatly appealing to customers especially to a younger demographics. If it fits the mood of your store, offer a “play zone” with toys for the kids or throwback video games such as Pac Man or air hockey. When offering extras, you should strive to engage your customers and not distract them.
44. Create Store Events: even though sales and promotions are majorly geared towards increasing foot traffic, however you can also consider bringing customers to your store for fun events related to the products or services you offer.
For example, if your business sells food or kitchenware, then you should consider offering cooking classes on set days of the week. If you offer health foods or fitness equipment, you should consider offering yoga classes one day or after hours. If you have a make-up or clothing store but can’t afford to have an on-site stylist, consider bringing one in for demonstrations a few days a week.
45. Create a Loyalty Program: in order to foster customer engagement, you should consider creating a customer loyalty program. You can equip your POS software to help you maintain your loyalty program by storing customer contact information and tracing purchases, enabling you to tailor a program that rewards people for repeat business, encourages them to refer friends and family, and provides members-only coupons and discounts.
You can also collect your customer email to send targeted offers to your loyalty database, making your most valuable consumers aware of upcoming sales and promotions. If you collect phone information, some POS systems will even send “push” messages to customer smart phones when they are near your store.
46. Look to the future: you should always look to the future and plan for growth. Keep up with developments in your sector, follow consumer trends, invest in new technology and – crucially – have a clear idea of where you want to be in one, three and five years’ time.
In conclusion, as far as the retail industry is concerned, brick and mortar businesses are here to stay. However, retailers should be opened minded and quick to adapt in order to survive in the future when the market share of physical stores may reduce significantly.
There are a lot of ways by which brick and mortar stores can maintain their share of the business, combat the growing e-commerce trend while joining in on the growth instead of falling prey to its projected success. Granted, competing with ecommerce businesses when your store is strictly brick and mortar based is not easy.
The playing field is just not level in the sense that as a brick and mortar, you will always have expenses that they don’t. It will take a consistent effort over time if your small business is going to retain and grow your market share. But it is possible if you can beat those online businesses at their own game and become the destination of choice.
Now that you know the various ways by which your brick and mortar business can adapt and withstand competition from eCommerce store, it’s time to start taking active steps to ensure that you business survives and thrives.