For your eyes only
Visual appeal in the apparel industry makes a big impact on the footfall as well as the conversion ratio. For example, an apparel store with mannequins donning their latest collection has a greater chance of people walking into them than their counterparts with a mere sign and adaptability of these players. The jungle law of survival of the fittest however, still applies in these markets and, going by the resistance that some of these emerging economies offered to FDI in retail, it is evident that a lot is left to diplomacy and chance.
In spite of the challenges, the emerging economies provide the ultimate opportunity for brands to tap the rapidly growing and dynamic markets. Adopting strategies that ensure a longlasting and fruitful run is therefore mandatory to cope with the regional diversity in such economies. Looking at players that have made a mark over the last decade, it is evident that their adaptability, customisation and region-specific marketing strategies have been their greatest strengths.
For local players, the markets are still ripe with opportunities globalisation brought about. Footfalls will increase over time and so will consumption; however it is only the players equipped with footfall conversion strategies, superior customer relationship management techniques and quality brand management policies that will hold the reins to the market in the long run.
While the techniques mentioned may improve footfall at a store or a shopping mall, converting them into buyers involves a more comprehensive strategy that delves deep into customer psyche. Well-groomed sales executives, ample retail space for movement and accessible store displays often induce a desire to shop from a store. As more and more companies opt for CRM (customer relationship marketing) solutions and as the options in the market are increasing, with the introduction of cloud computing and SaaS options in the CRM space, retailers today have a variety of solutions to choose from, for management of their customer data. With these advanced systems, retailers can have access to actionable, stat-based and concrete data that facilitates faster business decisions. Access to customer data that is effectively segregated, real-time data sharing and multi-channel usage options make today’s CRMs an absolute necessity for retailers. These solutions can help identify issues in the marketing strategy as well as constantly keep a tab on costs for companies, thereby helping retailers identify, target and eventually manage customers better. A customer, who enjoys a pleasant retail and after- sales service experience, has a higher chance of recommending the store to a friend/relative, even if the product is at par with the rest of the market. This can have a direct impact on footfall conversion as word-of-mouth remains.