According to the 2017 State of Personalization Report, customers are still shopping in-store, but they want a personalized experience.
“44% of consumers surveyed said they likely would become repeat buyers after personalized experiences (Retail Dive).”
My Personal Experience
I purchased my first pair of running shoes and a few other things from the Athletic Annex. I spent over $150 dollars so they sent me the following email encouraging me to come back in-store. The thing I love about this email is that it was a personalized discount just for me.
A personalized email I received in my inbox from the Athletic Annex, a RICS client.
How to Adapt
The trend is clear. Creating a personalized experience will be crucial to a successful brick-and-mortar strategy, and this requires customer data. But which data points are the most important? How can you use them?
Try the following:
#1 Needs and Interests: After you collect the basic information (name, email, address), take notes on their purchases and interests. Understanding specific needs and interests customers have is a great way to add a layer of personalization to their shopping experience.
For example… If a customer is training for a big race, add this information to their notes. Then send them emails promoting different items that will help their training in the months leading up to race day.
#2 Purchase History: If you have the right inventory management system, you can track customer purchases back to customer accounts. Having a sense of brands and items customers have bought can help you properly sell to them in the future.
For example… If a group of customers routinely buy the newest New Balance 880s, consider sending them a coupon they can use on the purchase of any two items when the latest shoe comes out.
If you’re a RICS customer and need help providing a similar experience, we’d be happy to walk you through it. For assistance, call 317.275.5950 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also visit our Help Desk.
What does this mean for brick-and-mortar?
It is more important than ever to invest in human capital and technology to deliver a personalized experience at a high level. If you don’t have the technology to provide this sort of experience, it is time to consider investing in a new solution.
That’s why the Running Industry Association (RIA) and RICS have teamed up to provide retailers with a technology buying guide. A modern point of sale (POS) does more than just process transactions. It becomes a part of your retail technology strategy, including inventory management and customer relationship management components.
“The RIA is working closely with the RICS team to ensure our members have the educational resources to remain successful in today’s competitive marketplace. Our collaboration is rooted in a shared vision for a growing and thriving running specialty community” – Terry Schalow, RIA Executive Director
Don’t get overwhelmed by the news hype on retail changes. Great in-store experiences are still desired. Take a deep breath and start here.