8 New Year’s Resolutions for Librarians

  1. Home
  2. 2013

Library ResolutionsToday’s librarians should have two main goals for 2014: bring more people to their facilities and offer more resources to their communities. As eReaders and eBooks gain popularity, people are losing sight of the creativity that a library can inspire. People are unsure of how to fit libraries into their lives in the digital age.

Here’s how you can reassure them, while also helping your library a little, too:

1. Encourage donations and book drives.

You can encourage library engagement by inviting the community to donate their gently used materials. If they don’t fit in your collection, you can sell or trade them in a monthly book drive or give them to your local Salvation Army.

In fact, book drives and sales are ideal for any library: they bring members of the community to the facility and they help raise money. The extra money can be used for summer reading programs or other activities that will help your facility better serve its community.

2. Rethink, reorganize, redesign.

Few libraries have the budget or resources for a complete renovation, but a breath of fresh air can be accomplished with a simple change of scenery. You could rearrange furniture to create more space; paint the walls with bright colors to breathe new life into your building; or organize makerspaces. These changes are not only cost-effective but can also inspire further creativity.

Recommended reading:

How to Leverage Library Design to Encourage Creativity

Enhancing the Experience: A Modern Library’s Guide to Makerspaces

3. Streamline your website.

Your site should be informative, engaging and easy to use. Can they glance at the website and understand your mission and message within a few seconds? Can they find what they are looking for in under a minute? The last thing you want to do is push people away with a poor web presence. Not to mention, your website gives you more opportunities to spread the word about your events, resources and services.

4. Track your visitors.

You can implement technology to track how many visitors come in and out of your facility, measure how often services are used, record how well events are attended and gauge how often materials are used. While a point of sale system can only track data surrounding your transactions, a people counting system can track the amount of people who visit your facility without making purchases – which is most of them. By getting a grasp on how your facility is being used, you will be able to continue to provide the programming that your community wants.

5. Use marketing tactics.

With constant budget cuts being made, marketing is extremely important to libraries. A marketing plan can increase your visibility and demonstrate your value to the community. Email marketing would work especially well for libraries. For example, when a visitor has a question, ask them for their email address to receive updates regarding their query. You could also allow people to sign up for newsletters on your website and computer databases.

The key is to use marketing tactics as often as you want people to pay attention to your facility. If you host and promote new events each week, for example, then your facility will be on the local radar on a weekly basis. Marketing gives libraries the opportunity to become a strong figure in their community and inspires visitors to support it.

6. Develop ongoing resolutions.

Did you accomplish what you wanted to last year? Is it a realistic goal or do you need to set a more reachable one? For the goals that seem insurmountable, you might need to make a two or five-year plan in which you achieve a small step each year. For example, redesigning your current location or opening up a new branch may take a few years to complete.

What would you like to accomplish this year?

Trend report: 2013 Holiday Shoppers Continue to Conserve, Seek Exceptional Service

  1. Home
  2. 2013

online shoppingTo remain a popular destination for holiday shoppers and reap the benefits of the most fruitful shopping season, retailers must offer sales that appeal to smart shoppers; a large, knowledgeable staff that can provide great customer service; and technology to help them through the many shopping trips they will inevitably make.

Smart shopping
In the saving vs. splurging debate, price-conscious consumers are still coming out on top. As predicted, the trends we saw during the back to school shopping season have carried over to the holiday season. Only 21 percent of holiday shoppers planned to spend more money on gifts this year than last according to a study conducted by Customer Feedback Insights (CFI) Group, with the rest aiming to conserve.

They’re dead set on saving: one in three shoppers said their store preferences are most motivated by promoted sales and coupons. Likewise, a quarter of them said they choose their holiday shopping destinations based on everyday low price, rather than location, store atmosphere or customer service. These results suggest that this season’s shoppers value convenience over experience.

Although the economy is slowly recovering, we are also seeing consumers continue to struggle. Roughly half of respondents said their holiday spending plans were affected by a change in their personal financial well-being.

As reported during the back to school season, shoppers are not only taking advantage of sales but shopping smarter in general. A quarter of holiday shoppers started in October and 61 percent plan to have their shopping wrapped up by early December. The study showed that many of these smart shoppers were millennials – they started and will end their holiday before their 45-56 year old counterparts. Aside from age, income also played a role: higher income consumers are more likely to be “last minute shoppers” and those with incomes less than $50K are early shoppers.

Cyber spending
Consumers are becoming less interested in shopping specifically on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Fewer than a quarter indicate they plan to spend more than half of their total holiday shopping budget on those days. Their dollars are being spent online instead. According to the same CFI study, 45 percent of consumers indicated they will spend more than 40 percent of their total holiday budgets online.

While most would assume that millenials take the cake when it comes to e-commerce, CFI reported that the best opportunity for online holiday sales lies among 25-34 year olds because one third of them will spend more than half of their 2013 holiday budgets on the web. In general, though, e-commerce spending was strong among both baby boomers and millenials.

The brick-and-mortar buzz
As reported by AchieveGlobal, two key discoveries were made this holiday season. Customers who were happier with their overall shopping experiences were likely to spend more. Specifically, a satisfactory experience includes availability, variety, quick checkouts and friendly service.

Retailers who achieve these are ringing in more sales this holiday season. In a recent study, Deloitte reported that 37 percent of respondents still prefer shopping in a physical store rather than online for holiday products. Exceptional customer service still inspires shoppers to give a retailer their business.

In order to accomplish quick checkouts and friendly service, retailers made the effort to hire a staff large enough to adequately accommodate holiday shoppers. WANTED Analytics reported that during September and October of 2013, U.S. retailers had more than 379,000 available sales jobs – an 11 percent increase in demand when compared to the same two-month period in 2012, marking a new four-year high level of demand for retail jobs.

More than half of respondents to the Deloitte study said that knowledgeable store associates lead them to making an in-store purchase. However, what today’s consumers deem great customer service involves more than just a knowledgeable staff – 32 percent feel store associates can provide customers a better shopping experience when equipped with the latest mobile technologies. Likewise, nearly six in 10 of shoppers will use self-help technologies — the most common being price checkers (60 percent) and self-checkout payment lanes (57 percent).

However, today’s consumers are skeptical about retailers’ ability to provide them with cross-channel customer service: 59 percent said feel they are better connected to consumer information, including coupons, competitive pricing and product availability, than store associates.

How have the holidays been treating your store?

Trend report: Why Personalized Retail Is the Future of Brick-and-Mortar Stores

  1. Home
  2. 2013

Personalized Shopping ExperienceThese days, consumers aren’t coming to brick-and-mortar stores for the prices or the selection – they can usually find better alternatives to both online. They’re coming for the experience. Libraries, museums and other public buildings are seeing this shift, too. These industries are feeling increased pressure to provide something that can’t be reproduced online, something that’s worthy of a trip. That something is personalization.

Today’s “personalized retail” trend is the practice of providing an in-store experience that is tailored to each visitor – and it might be all some brick-and-mortar stores have left. Personalizing the shopping experience for your customers can increase profit margins, strengthen customer loyalty and level the playing field with mobile and e-commerce.

Here’s why this trend will gain ground:

1. Today’s consumers are part of the “experience economy.”

As discussed in a recent blog, changes in culture have resulted in a shift in consumer expectations. For retail stores and other public places, they want an experience, rather than an explanation. Think of it this way. Consumers don’t NEED to make the trip to a retail store. They can find just about anything they need online. Retailers have to make them WANT to.

Speculation about this shift has been circulating for some time now. In fact, in 1998, two consultants coined the term “the experience economy” and suggested that businesses offer customers a memorable time, rather than a product or service. Like any trend, it took a few years before retailers were able to directly translate it to their store. That time has now come.

2. Brick-and-mortar retailers can’t afford bad experiences.

Although retail has always been a tough industry, the competition has gotten even tougher over the course of the last decade. Traditional retail business models are dissolving, traditional outbound methods are now outdated and with the rise of the internet came the rise in online shopping. Survival depends on a satisfying customer service. Not to mention, as if Amazon.com wasn’t already hard to compete with, customers expect the same level of service that they receive from the leading shopping site… and they’ll go elsewhere if they don’t get it.

3. Consumers expect personalization.

Consumers not only want, but expect a personalized experience. They expect retailers to know their preferences and interests. A recent Infosys survey reported that 78 percent of consumers are more likely to be a repeat customer if a retailer provides them with targeted, personalized offers. Failing to provide this personalization will have the opposite result: the CMO Council reported that more than half of U.S. and Canadian consumers consider ending their loyalties to retailers who do not give tailored, relevant offers.

And they’re willing to pay for it, too. According to a RightNow Customer Impact Report, 86 percent of consumers will pay up to 25 percent more for a better customer experience.

The bottom line is – whether it’s greeting customers as they enter your store, sending personalized emails, tailoring deals based on previous purchase behavior or a “recommended products” section – personalization promotes customer loyalty. And loyalty is just as valuable (if not more) as attracting new customers. The retail industry requires that store employees keep their existing customer base satisfied, or else their foundation will crumble.

4. There is a wealth of customer-related knowledge to be had.

Business analytics have made it so that consumers can expect retailers to know what they want without even telling them. Consumers now know that modern retailers have that capability. To meet their growing expectations, it’s up to you to take advantage of recent online and in-store transactions and other interactions. Consumers aren’t creeped out by your ability to collect this information – they encourage it so that you are able to offer them the things they are interested in.

And with more customer-related data becomes available every day, it would be silly to miss out on such an opportunity. Solutions like predictive analytics and people counting allow retailers to launch personalized marketing campaigns. Failing to see the value that this information could provide to your marketing efforts would be extremely short-sighted.

To learn more about transforming your store, check out 3 Steps to Designing a Successful Shopping Experience.

Enhancing the Experience: A Modern Library’s Guide to Makerspaces

  1. Home
  2. 2013

Makerspace at libraryAs a culture, our expectations for public places like libraries, museums and shopping malls are shifting from a destination to an experience. The increased importance on “the experience” is a trend has been going on for decades. In fact, in 1998, two consultants coined the term “the experience economy” and suggested that businesses offer customers a memorable time, rather than a product or service.

Recap: Last week we wrote about library design, explaining that a change in scenery could spark interest in today’s library visitor – one who expects more than just a classic novel in a quiet corner. As we discussed, they are doing so by creating spaces that cater to creativity. One of the easiest and most effective ways to do this is through an organized makerspace.

What is a makerspace?

A makerspace is a collaborative learning environment that allows library visitors to explore their interests, share materials and skills and create their own projects. So much can be done with these creative workshops. They can be used for educational purposes or simply to allow people to explore their artistic side.

Examples of makerspaces:

  • Matching games and math problems for younger children
  • Mother-daughter crafts, like creating a community quilt
  • Painting and drawing workshops
  • Halloween mask-making workshops

Why should I organize one?

Makerspaces serve a dual purpose. Not only allow libraries to attract more visitors, they also solidify their role as an educational asset to the community. With music and art programs constantly getting cut, these activities encourage education and creativity in a way that local schools might not. Also, parents might not have the resources to make crafts with their children on a regular basis or give them access to movies and new technologies.

What about the other visitors?

People might argue that these activities are disruptive to regular visitors who like things they way they are, but for libraries, times are tough and money is tight. Anything that will help them attract more visitors is a good thing. Otherwise, they risk reductions in budget, staff or hours.

If you are concerned about disturbing others, you could organize your makerspaces for a time that does not experience heavy traffic. When there are fewer people in the library, it will be easier for them to escape the sound. Determining your peak makerspace times is easy with the right resources.

Rather that reviewing transaction history, which only tells you how many people rented books, you can use a people counting system to run traffic reports that will tell you how many people entered and exited the building during a certain time period. Knowing how many people are in the building during certain hours will also help you determine how many staff members are needed and how well your makerspaces are working.

How much is it going to cost?
It’s no secret that libraries often struggle to operate on tight state budgets. The great thing about makerspaces is that these collaborative activities are as cost-effective as you need them to be. A great creative and collaborative experience is a product of your staff members, not your space. They can be as simple as a small table and chairs and some construction paper.

If your facility is able, it can also be part of a larger initiative that teaches the community how to use tablet technology, for example. Facilities with a more comfortable budget can devote an entire creative corner to their makerspaces and incorporate the latest technology, like a scavenger hunt using hidden QR codes or math games using Sifteo Cubes.

How do I get library visitors to participate?

Libraries across the nation have been implementing makerspaces to encourage creativity. History shows that people will collaborate naturally when the creative workshop centers on a fun topic. If participants are having trouble breaking the ice, you could encourage them to communicate by creating activities that involve collaboration or being close to one another. For example, participants are bound to communicate while working on a community mural – an activity that will keep them engaged and keep them coming back.

In the case of libraries, a community member no longer needs to visit the library in order to conduct research because they most likely have Google at home. So in response, modern libraries are working to make their visit a memorable one. They are creating stories instead of giving them.

sliderCTA-library

How to Leverage Library Design to Encourage Creativity

  1. Home
  2. 2013

woman in libraryThe main obstacles for today’s libraries are Amazon, Wikipedia and Google. Whether or not these are the best sources, people want a quick and easy solution to their queries. In a world where we are provided with instant and constant gratification, we don’t want to have to travel to the library and scan several shelves before finding the right resource. Visitors no longer need to come to the library to read or research, therefore these facilities must make visitors want to come. To do so, they must create spaces that leverage the latest technology and cater to creativity.

Take elements from other facilities

Having trouble thinking of ways to redesign or reconfigure current resources? To establish their facility as a community anchor, library staffs should take the most useful elements of schools and museums and then merge and implement them into their existing space. This means incorporating art galleries, exhibits and artifacts, a room for book readings and movie screenings, a research commons for college students and other interactive installments.

Start with simple changes

If your facility doesn’t have the budget for extensive renovations or a complete redesign, don’t worry. Few libraries do. A simple change of scenery will excite and inspire your visitors. Rearrange your shelves to create more space. Paint the walls with brighter colors to make it more inviting. A bright, open space may make all the difference in choosing between the library and the coffee shop for a study session. These changes are both cost-effective and are a great way to kick start a creative initiative.

Encourage creativity and enhance the experience

The possibilities are endless, ranging from cost-effective to highly expensive. For libraries that do not have the budget to leverage the latest technology like tablets, they can use their existing resources to provide a creative space for both children and adults. For example, when showing movies or doing book readings for children or adults, libraries can include displays in that designated area that have similar books and movies relating to the reading of the day or the movie of the day. This could encourage them to take what they’ve learned to the next level, giving them another reason to visit the library. They could also create an art gallery for crafts that children have made while at the library. This would give children a creative outlet that they might not have at school or at home.

For libraries that do have the funds to incorporate tablets, they can place them in strategic places throughout the facility. They mount tablets on shelf end caps, giving access to the card catalogue, book reviews, as well as give them the ability to check out a book and find other materials and information related to it. It is important for visitors to learn how to use these devices because they may become a part of our everyday lives – more so than the Dewey Decimal system. By implementing tablets, libraries can show that they are not falling victim to technology; they are embracing it and using it to enhance the visitor’s experience.

Use analytics to determine placement and timing

People counting systems can provide information about the amount of visitors who enter and exit each area in the facility. Staff members can install people counters above each room, seating area or wing of the library to gain information about foot traffic in each area. So with door counters, library staffs can learn how often each area is used and by how many people. This knowledge would allow them to place cafes, kiosks, exhibits and galleries at a place where they will be the most noticed and the most used. They can also base the operating hours of these elements on the peak traffic hours provided by the people counting system.

It’s no secret that the focus of libraries is shifting from the resources to the overall experience. Incorporating technology and an interactive design is a way to offer an experience that Amazon, Google and Wikipedia cannot provide.

sliderCTA-library

5 Ways for Your Nonprofit to Use Visual Content on Social Media

  1. Home
  2. 2013

bigstock-Social-Media-Word-Cloud-10422092By now, most nonprofits know that social media smarts are a must for marketing. What some of them don’t know is how to use social media to its fullest potential: visual content.

It’s a fact that visual content drives engagement. According to Zabisco, 40 percent of people will respond better to visual information than plain text. Likewise, one month after the introduction of Facebook timeline for brands, visual content saw a 65 percent increase in engagement, according to Simply Measured.

Promote merchandise and fundraisers

Merchandise is a great tool for brand awareness. You can dedicate a Facebook photo album, Instagram hash tag or Pinterest board to your t-shirts, wristbands and buttons, all with your branding. This works especially well for brands that make use of clever sayings, like Keep a Breast’s “I Heart Boobies.”

A great way to exercise this strategy is to post pictures of sponsors and volunteers wearing your merchandise. Pinterest is probably the best outlet for promoting merchandise. The site drives sales directly from its website. Twenty-one percent of people with Pinterest accounts purchased an item after seeing it on Pinterest, according to PriceGrabber.

You can also apply this social media marketing strategy to your fundraisers. Instead of posting photos of your merchandise, you can post Facebook and Twitter updates about incentives to raise money – silent auctions, Chinese auctions, raffles, drawings, etc. You can establish yourself as a leader in creativity, inspiring other nonprofits to find new ways to fundraise.

Highlight sponsors

Social media can be used to thank your sponsors – a great way to show your appreciation of the support they have given your organization. It’s a win-win for you and your sponsors – they can share it to their social media network and their audience will become aware of your organization and cause.

Larger-scale nonprofit organizations can dedicate Facebook and Twitter updates, Pinterest boards and Instagram hash tags to celebrities and well-known people who have supported their organization by donating, volunteering or attending an events. Smaller-scale organizations who many not have well-known ambassadors can do the same thing but simply with members of the community that have an interesting story or background.

A great way to do this would be to post a video of them speaking about your organization or participating in one of your events. For example, the Gates Foundation shares videos on its Pinterest account, including talks by Bill and Melinda Gates. While photos are a great resource, videos can take your content to the next level. And according to SEOmoz, posts with videos attract three times more inbound links than plain text posts.

Highlight trips and events

Highlighting trips and events by posting on-location is a wonderful way to show your supporters the impact they are making. This social media marketing tactic is perfect for nonprofits who organize clean-ups, mission trips, learning workshops, food drives and so on.

Imagine videos of members of your organization helping build a school in Nicaragua, and pictures and stories about the people they have met along the way. People can see first-hand the work that you are doing. It tells a story way better than a news update on your website would.

Also, these are the kinds of videos that people love to watch and share. An especially emotional one could go viral and inspire others to contribute to your cause. You could even highlight videos from your travels and events on a dedicated Pinterest board. Trust me on this one. Viewers spend 100 percent more time on pages with videos on them, according to MarketingSherpa.

Spread awareness

When it comes to spreading awareness, if the internet gives nonprofits a voice then it can be said that social media gives them a megaphone. Sharing tips and statistics is a simple task on any social media outlet. Your organization can author a series of updates that provide information relating to your cause, such as “breast cancer warning signs” or “how to help a loved one cope with cancer.” This will not only be a powerful resource for your supporters, but for anyone who might be affected by your cause.

A new and innovative way to share simple information is with an infographic – an informational graphic that can be easily shared on any social media. They’re not only engaging, but traffic-driving. Publishers who use infographics grow an average of 12 percent more traffic according to AnsonAlex.

Visual content is not only being increasingly used in online marketing, but is also especially important for nonprofits organizations. With each cause and mission comes thousands of stories to tell. Social media gives supporters, fundraisers, donors and volunteers a place to see and share these stories with engaging visuals.

The Top Two Benefits of Omnichannel Retailing

  1. Home
  2. 2013

To stay current, brick-and-mortar stores are redefining the in-store experience to make it a more convenient one. Today’s consumers are used to being online all the time, engaged in several different channels at once – like watching TV while browsing Facebook on their iPad or smartphone. Channels are starting to run together.

Consumers expect brick-and-mortar stores to keep up, offering the same kind of integration in the shopping experience. They expect to be able to order items online, have them shipped to their house and return them in the store – a seamless experience between online and brick-and-mortar. Retailers must make sure that they meet these expectations, because if they don’t, shoppers can easily find another store that does. This seamless shopping experience is called omnichannel retailing.

1.        Collecting customer information for targeted marketing tactics.

In the past, retailers have asked customers for their email address and zip code at the point of sale. However, they have no way of knowing which customers they have already asked, so they ask every customer every time – which can become bothersome. Instead, omnichannel strategies allow customers to enter their own information at their own will, which they are often more comfortable with.

For example, in-store kiosks allow customers to enter their email address rather than giving it to the cashier. Also, online stores and social media pages provide outlets for retailers to collect customer information in a less aggressive way, like simply inviting them to sign up for email alerts. They can choose to give their first and/or last name in addition to their email address, allowing retailers to send personalized emails.

In addition to name and email address, retailers can gain insight into what their customers have been shopping for online. With this information, they can make specific offers about customers’ favorite products. For example: “Dear Mrs. Smith, We’ve noticed you have been looking for jeans lately. We would like to offer you 30 percent off of your next pair! Enter the promotion code ‘JEANS’ to redeem your exclusive offer.” This provides them with even more motivation to make a purchase.

2.        Making more sales in more places.

With omnichannel retailing in place, shoppers can make purchases from wherever they please. It gives retailers inventory visibility and availability in the customer’s preferred channel. For customers, shopping is more convenient than ever and for retailers, there are more buying opportunities than ever. Shoppers have a wider selection and multiple means of accessing that selection. Here are a few examples of how retailers can leverage the omnichannel:

Online ordering: For example, a shopper who is snowed in can browse shoes and Christmas items online instead of having to dig out her car and drive to the mall. She can order items straight from the store’s website and have them shipped to her house. You can offer style tips and size guides for exceptional online customer service.

Encouraged showrooming: Ever found the perfect pair of jeans only to realize there weren’t any left in your size? Omnichannel retailing allows customers to browse items in the store that may be of limited quantity and then shop for additional size and color options online. That way, they can see the item and try it on before purchasing it online. They can either have the item shipped and delivered to their house or shipped to the store for pick up. Retailers could also set up a kiosk, so customers can place an order for their preferred size and color while they are still in the store.

Social media sharing: Posting products and gift ideas on your social media profiles allows users to send them to their friends and share them on their own pages. Users can give opinions and recommendations to their friends, allowing word of your products to spread. Offering coupons and deals on your social media profiles will inspire users to visit your online store to redeem their exclusive offer.

The omnichannel is a beautiful thing. It allows retailers to get closer to their customers and make customized offers. It allows customers to enjoy the convenience of their preferred channel, a wider selection of items and a wealth of buying opportunities. It blurs the lines between online, brick-and-mortar, smartphones and social media for a five-star seamless shopping experience.

Download a free ebook

3 Steps to Designing a Successful Shopping Experience

  1. Home
  2. 2013

The shopping experience is what is keeping the brick-and-mortar retail sector alive. Without a more-than-satisfactory experience, shoppers will surely turn to showrooming and online shopping.

Window Shopping

Here’s how to shape your shoppers’ experience:

1. Make a good first impression

The shopping experience begins before shoppers have even entered the store – with advertising, branding, competitor research and social media campaigns. These are all important assets in shaping a positive shopping experience, as they make up future customers’ first impression of your store. According to researchers at the Missouri University of Science and Technology, it takes less than two-tenths of a second for an online visitor to form their first impression of your brand.

So make sure your website, web store, mobile apps and social media profiles promote your mission and message as clearly as possible, because these assets are meant to give consumers an idea of what to expect upon entering the store. To make sure that you meet these expectations, you must engage with consumers via social media and other channels will give you an idea of how to design the experience according to their needs and wants.

Here’s a hint: In this digital day and age, shoppers not only expect to be able to find information about a store online before or after their physical visit, they also expect access to coupons, deals and promotions in exchange for interacting with your brand. According to HubSpot, research shows that 58 percent of Facebook users expect exclusive offers from business pages. They often expect a first-time customer discount by checking in on location-based applications, a text or email service that notifies them of upcoming sales and a customer loyalty point system.

2. Understand expectations, define the experience

After you have gotten an understanding of their expectations upon entering the store, the most important part of designing the shopping experience is not only meeting but exceeding their expectations. Doing so will either maintain, reinforce or improve the impression they formed initially.

Do they expect a sale rack? Do they expect additional sizing options? Do they expect the latest styles or latest technology? Consider these kinds of questions. A shopper isn’t going to recommend your store to their friends for simply meeting their expectations. In the shopping experience, the retailer must not only meet, but exceed customer needs enough to inspire him or her to take further action – recommend your store to a friend, like the store page on Facebook, make more purchases, etc.

Also, what are their personas? Who is your target audience? Even if you sell to an especially narrow market, it is useful to consider the other kinds of shoppers you see in your store. Think about what they want to accomplish, as well as what their problems, needs and desires are.

3. Leverage assets accordingly

After you have identified and evaluated your customers’ expectations of a successful shopping experience, you need to ensure that each aspect of your store is in alignment. Think about your employee performance, labor allocation, inventory, store layout, marketing efforts and social media presence. Think about how each asset and aspect contribute to the overall experience. This will enable you to smooth out any inconsistencies.

Business analytics are another crucial step in designing the shopping experience as they provide you with the knowledge to apply the process in the most efficient and cost-effective way possible. A people counting system will allow you to optimize these aspects in accordance to the amount of shoppers who enter your store on an hourly, daily, weekly or monthly basis. With access to detailed traffic reports and conversion rates, you can identify your peak shopping hours and make sure you exhibit an optimal shopping experience during those hours. You can also gain insight into how many employees are needed to adequately serve the amount of shoppers in the store in a given time frame, for example.

Carefully designing the shopping experience ensures that you can meet their needs by having the assistance and options to accommodate to what they expect. It also allows you to exceed their expectations by offering additional service or opportunities.

 

Download a free ebook