Sears launched a new App that allows customers to purchase from their phone, drive to the store, and have a customer service rep come to the car and drop off the package. How can small businesses diversify their strategies? Watch on.
Hi, and welcome to Scaling Retail, this is Syama Meagher. This week, I’d like to chat with you about some new retail technologies. In particular, Sears launched a new mobile app by which they allow their customers to participate in something called “click to store.” In fact, it’s more like “click to car.” What does this app allow you to do? Well, in essence, you can place an order over your app and drive to the Sears store, stay in your car, and someone will come out and deliver your product to your car. Now of course, there are a lot of different things that might make this a little bit more challenging.
Can you imagine if you’re driving to the parking lot, and your customer is coming out there and looking for the product? And then you have a sales associate running around all over the parking lot, trying to find you? This might make it a little bit more challenging, but it is a very interesting concept to think about, especially as you as a small business, take a look and find all the different ways in which you can start to service your client better. How can you make the shopping experience more seamless, and how can you provide them different ways of taking home your product? Now of course, during the holiday times, you see a lot of free same day delivery, free shipping, courier services and things like that. Or even free international shipping. Most of those things can start to be expensive, when you start to take a look at the number of orders you’re getting, and how it’s really eating into your margins.
What I would suggest doing is trying to find certain points during the year, that perhaps a larger retail chain of stores aren’t necessarily doing these promotional activities, and finding ways of tapping into your customer. So, for example, we all know the big guys do things around Labor Day, President’s Day, and other types of big holidays. But what if you as a small business, initiated your own holiday, and your own opportunity to do these little perks? You know, this will absolutely set you apart from your competition, and also provide you with a different way of communicating to your customer on those days, when they’re not necessarily bombarded by larger retailers.
So, hopefully, the Sears program goes well, and they find that customers are responding well to that technology. But think critically as a business owner, and as a small brand. How can you communicate more effectively to your customer, and what are the things that you can offer from a technology standpoint – whether it’s an app, whether it’s free shipping via the app. How are you starting to drive people to purchase through you, in more innovative ways? All right, I hope you have a great weekend, and I’ll talk to you soon. Thanks. Bye.