“How to Increase Retail Sales in 2022 With Virtual Queuing” by Steve Covate via Total Retail

“How to Increase Retail Sales in 2022 With Virtual Queuing” by Steve Covate via Total Retail

Photo Credit: Getty Images If the last two years have taught retailers anything, it might be that workforce trends can be just as unpredictable as consumer trends. The industry has always faced challenges in hiring and retaining talent, but the current labor shortage is nearly unprecedented. Workforce struggles paired with customers who are generally more finicky and impatient are forcing brick-and-mortar retailers to rethink their strategies. Keeping employees happy has become almost as important as keeping customers happy — and the way people feel at work matters just as much as the wages you’re paying and the value you’re providing. Virtual queuing offers a way to improve the experience for workers and consumers alike. Changing the ways customers wait for service may seem like a minor adjustment, but the potential to increase efficiency, staff morale and, perhaps most importantly, sales is significant. In 2022, this potential can’t be overlooked. Related story: 3 Things to Consider for Omnichannel Success A Variety of Use Cases Virtual queuing is based on a simple idea: instead of standing in a physical line, customers check into a queue on their smartphones, then are notified when their turn comes up. Customers are free to do whatever they want — including shopping other parts of the store — while they “wait.” The wait itself becomes productive in that customers can ask questions and provide additional information to staff so that when they reach the front of the virtual queue, employees are better prepared to deliver outstanding service. Customers also can receive updates on estimated wait times and can even be sent virtual offers — e.g., digital coupons...
“Five Takeaways for Retailers from CES 2022” by Arick Wierson via The Robin report

“Five Takeaways for Retailers from CES 2022” by Arick Wierson via The Robin report

Well, that was interesting. When CES 2022 came to a close, one day ahead of schedule; attendees were dismissed early as “an additional safety measure” for minimizing the risks of Covid-19. (Apparently the brain trust at the Consumer Technology Association – the entity which produces the annual Las Vegas extravaganza – didn’t think that the risks of Covid-19 would be all that high on the first few days of the show.) The Show Must Go On Granted, show organizers were pretty much in a no-win situation. The pandemic had already forced the 2021 show to go completely online – an endeavor that was generally viewed by most long-term showgoers as something of a dud. I completely agree as I was involved in the production of several exhibitors’ “virtual CES showrooms” which amounted to producing a slickly produced half-hour magazine show that highlighted brands’ new products. It looked great, but CES is really the place you go because you want to touch and see the new tech up close. Retail executives as well as leaders at consumer brands should really be thinking now about how AR/VR can be leveraged to help position themselves for the day when the tech eventually matures, and adoption reaches the tipping point. But this year event organizers seemingly made a suicide pact and vowed to make sure the show would go on no matter how much incoming fire they took on– and boy was there pressure to cancel. It was undoubtedly all this pressure of high profile dropouts that compelled Consumer Technology Association president Gary Shapiro to post a lengthy Christmas Eve rant/missive/justification for why the show was still...
“Let’s Talk Digital Growth in 2022” by Christine Russo of RCCA (newest BRA Supporting Vendor Partner)

“Let’s Talk Digital Growth in 2022” by Christine Russo of RCCA (newest BRA Supporting Vendor Partner)

We are pleased to announce that Christine Russo of RCCA is our newest BRA Supporting Vendor Partner Below you will find a little Q & A about Christine Russo, who is an outstanding retailer resource that is currently offering a remarkable deal for BRA Distinguished Retail Members. – Doug Works, Executive Director of Board Retailers Association DW: Hello, Christine. Should our retail members call you Christine, Russo or something else? CR: Hi, Doug. I’m Christine, but most people call me Russo. DW: What do you like about Board Retailers Association? CR: I love the programs, resources and articles that Board Retailers Association curates for independent specialty retailers. DW: Why are you excited to be a BRA Supporting Vendor Partner? CR: I am excited to be involved because I help smaller businesses do big things. I am here to educate and inform and provide no-cost guidance and information. DW: Awesome. What does that mean for our Retail Members? CR: I can help to answer the following questions: How can my physical store compete with ecomm? How can I offer what the retail giants offer? How can I provide the same (or better) options to my customers? I scour retail technology solutions to find suitable solutions to help independent, small to medium brick and mortar physical retail. And I share the information. For Free. DW: So what would you say that your mission is as it relates to our Retail Members? CR: My mission is education and information. DW: Is it true that you are offering a special package for BRA Distinguished Retail Members that contains a 3 hour consulting package...
“Customers want you but choose Amazon, WHY?” by Dan Pankratz via Exchange Collective blog

“Customers want you but choose Amazon, WHY?” by Dan Pankratz via Exchange Collective blog

70% of Americans Prefer to Shop Local You hear it all the time, “I love your store,” or “I want to support local,” and “I am over Amazon.” But it is no secret that millions of customers are going to Amazon’s market place to shop and buy. But in a survey of 1,500 Americans done by Intuit, they found that 70% of customers prefer to support local businesses through online and instore purchases. Connecting with your in-store customers online is critical. It is proven that a majority of shoppers start their purchases online. This means your website needs to give customers the option to shop what you have to offer. “But I will never be able to compete with online prices,” so what is the point of trying to have an e-commerce site? A survey done in 2020 by Red Egg Marketing found that 82% of customers surveyed are willing to pay more for a product from a local retailer, and 8 out of 10 customers are willing to spend more money at local businesses. Your website should be treated as the first stop for your customers. Exchange Collective What does this mean for brands and retailers? Exchange Collective solves this problem – it allows people to support their local retailer and buy the brands they want. Brands win by controlling their product images and descriptions, Retailers win by having Brands manage the product data so they don’t have to. In the past few years, it has become easier for retailers to set up e-commerce sites. Though it may be easier for retailers to set up a site, the...