As a general necessities retailer, you play a huge role in supplying your shoppers with their day-to-day requirements. However, due to the pandemic, your shoppers can’t visit your retail store. You either may have shut your store completely or may not be able to handle the kind of foot traffic you used to be able to. Either way, providing an online experience of your retail store is the best way to serve your regular customers and keep your business running.
If you haven’t already, you can read Shopify’s guide to taking your brick-and-mortar store online. If you’ve set up your online store, here are 8 smart tactics we recommend for your online storefront to better serve your online shoppers, deliver positive shopping experiences, and boost sales.
8 Smart Online Store Tactics for General Necessities Retailers
1. Make it easier for bulk shoppers with volume discounts
Whether it’s toilet paper, soap, or food items, your shoppers are buying in bulk. Make it easier for them to buy in large quantities by providing volume discounts. With volume discounts, you can allow shoppers to get a discount when they buy multiple numbers of the same items or when they have a high order value.
Using the Volume & Discounted Pricing app, you can set up customized volume discounts specifically on products that are well-stocked or aren’t selling enough. This way, you can tap into the shopper’s need for that product and ensure more sales.
2. Alert shoppers about product availability
You are sure to run out of products, despite during this time as manufacturing is slower and bulk buying is abundant. But, you shouldn’t lose shoppers over this. Allow shoppers to subscribe to be notified about product availability with back-in-stock alerts.
Once enabled, shoppers would see a subscription widget on unavailable products. They can then subscribe to alerts. Once the product is back in stock, they will receive a message, making it easier for them to come back to your online store to make the purchase. This way, you ensure that you aren’t losing shoppers to stockouts!
Further reading: How to Customize Your Back in Stock Alerts During Coronavirus
3. Provide wishlisting
A shopper who has landed on your Shopify store for the first time may not be interested in buying immediately. But, they may be interested in a few products that catch their eye. You can make it easier for them to save these products by enabling wishlisting on your online store.
Wishlisting is a popularly requested feature. In fact, 40% of shoppers think their shopping experience would be better if retailers offered a wishlist where they can save items they’re interested in. Apps like Flits make it easier for you to set up a wishlist feature on your Shopify store.
4. Integrate retail and online sales with Shopify Point of Sale
Unify your in-store and online sales to keep all your store data in one place. Using Shopify’s Point of Sale app, you can track your performance, manage customers, orders, and inventory despite the multiple sales channels. This allows you to better understand your customers’ expectations and optimize your strategy both in your retail store and online.
If you are a retailer with a Shopify store, this app is integral to keep your store management and performance streamlined.
5. Enable flexible fulfillment options
During this time, retailers need to make the experience of shopping at their store easier. Some shoppers want a thorough, no contact delivery process. Others are not comfortable with delivery and want to pick up their order in-store. Some others want more concrete details about their order delivery. Enable these specific requirements on your Shopify store.
Here are 3 order fulfillment features to set up:
- No-Contact Delivery: Allow shoppers to choose No-contact delivery on your store by setting up apps that provide this functionality. Your shoppers will feel much safer when they have this option available to them. Ensure that your delivery partners are following these measures thoroughly.
- Order online, pick up in-store: Allow shoppers who are placing their order online to pick up from your store. Enable an in-store pick-up app to easily set up this option. Shoppers can then choose when they’ll be picking up the order and if you have multiple branches, they can choose which store they’re closest to.
- Delivery time slots: Give online shoppers more control over their order by allowing them to pick when their order should be delivered. This includes date and time so that shoppers have an expectation for when their order will arrive. Apps like Order Delivery Date allow you to set up this feature.
6. Tap into shopper behavior with product recommendations
When shoppers walk into your retail store, they may have a list of items in mind. However, it’s highly likely that they end up buying more items than they initially listed. This is because your products are highly visible and your retail shoppers end up seeing the products and picking them. Tap into this shopper behavior by placing product recommendations.
Using apps like WISER, you can place personalized product recommendations on your online store’s product pages and even the cart. This way, your shopper will be shown more products that are relevant to their view and shopping history and they’ll end up adding more items to their cart. This is the best and most effortless way to increase your order value.
7. Built urgency with countdown timer
Oftentimes, your online shoppers would see a product they are interested in but postpone buying it, assuming it would be available for a purchase later. Using a countdown timer, you can highlight that the product is in high demand and will run out soon.
A timer with a message like “Stock runs out in” is sure to nudge the shopper to make a purchase sooner rather than later.
8. Personalize experiences with a customer account
80% of shoppers are more likely to buy from a company that offers personalized experiences. Amazon sees a high return rate because of how personalized the experience is, from the recommendations to the shopper’s Account page. Provide such a customized experience to your shoppers with a revamped customer account page.
Using Flits, you can transform the regular old customer account page and provide your customers with a personalized dashboard where the customer can see their orders, wishlisted items, recently viewed products, etc. They can also reorder specific products through their customer account.
This way, your customer doesn’t have to do an extensive search to find a specific product. They can instead get all the details they need from their customer account.
Enable a positive online shopping experience
As many of your retail shoppers are pushed to take their shopping online, you need to ensure that their online shopping experience is as satisfactory as their in-store experience. These 8 strategies are sure to make it easier for your shoppers to purchase from you, despite not being able to visit your retail store.
If you need any help to set up your general necessities store, Shopify has a guide specific for Online Essentials Store and Pick-up.