I recently came across the study, “Total Retail 2015 - Retailing in an Age of Disruption”, which was extremely insightful. It highlighted the complexity, the challenges, and the opportunities resulting from the current retail disruption. Retailing is becoming an omnichannel experience with the physical store as only one part of that experience.
Even Retail Operations Needs Alignment
Here are just a few statements from the study which highlight how different things are today: “Today the customer is driving every facet of the shopping journey. The reality is that customers know what they want and expect retailers to provide it. Every retailer must consider how they can provide the unique experiences their customer’s value. The most successful retailers will be the ones that understand their customers best and have changed their strategy, operating model and infrastructure so that they evolve as customer needs evolve.”1.
It made me think about retail operations and how many things are often geared toward labor hours and efficiency. It is completely understandable that retail would focus on that, many businesses need to keep these numbers in check, however with the movement to a consumer-centric environment that may become a blind spot for some retailers. In the drive to reduce store labor hours and increase efficiencies, often the customer experience suffers. Question to ask...will this move your company growth in the long run?
In-store Remodels and the Customer Experience
You may wonder, so what does an in-store remodel have to do with the shopper experience? If you can imagine how day-to-day operational decisions may affect that experience, what happens when there is a major remodel in the store?
During a remodel, the store is sometimes completely torn apart and things are not where they should be. This causes shopper confusion and discomfort, thereby taking away from the overall shopper experience. The longer that remodel takes and the more disruption that it causes, the more everyone: Both shopper and staff are affected.
Put the Customer at the Center of Your Business Model
The study stated: “It’s more important than ever for retailers to provide customers with an exceptional in-store experience – one that’s tailored to their needs and desires- not just a retailer’s desire to sell product. “ The study recommends that the retailer: “Put your customer at the center of your business model and evaluate every decision you make (e.g. operational, structural, product) based on what your customers want and need.” 1.
Remodel Stores to Appeal to a Rich Shopper Experience
So, as forward-thinking retailers orient themselves around the customer at the hub, there will be a greater need to remodel stores to appeal to a rich shopper experience. And, while we know this is just one small piece of the puzzle, if you want to improve your customer experience, you’ll also want a smoother, more successful remodel.
Here are 5 Steps that will help you have a more successful remodel.