It’s all about individualisation nowadays, especially for young consumers. They like to highlight their uniqueness through personalised products, which they regard as status symbols. For brick-and-mortar retailers, it’s worth creating relevant offers based on creative ideas. Personalised experiences strengthen customer loyalty and demonstrably lead to higher sales in brick-and-mortar and online retailing.
Perceiving and treating customers as individuals
Individualisation starts with retailers offering – at least in part – a unique or unusual assortment in their shops. This allows them to fulfil their customers’ personal and special wishes and, at the same time, give them the feeling that they themselves are special because they are not part of the mainstream.
Shoppers can find out more about a product on the web in advance than ever before. This is another point that you can build on by giving product demonstrations and recommendations that are not available online. Highlight what sets this product apart from the same product at another brand, for example workmanship, ease of care or a wide range of colours. If you listen carefully and ask the right questions, you will recognise what is important to your counterpart, enabling you to respond to it specifically. In short, you can provide individual advice.
If you have your own web shop, offer your customers the option to collect the ordered goods in-store. Your customers will appreciate it if they are greeted personally when they pick up the goods, if the order is nicely packaged and if interpersonal contact is friendly. Positive side effect: your customers are in your shop, enabling you to generate additional sales through the clever placement of goods (bestsellers/remaindered items/promotions/specials).
In-store offers and promotions
In-store product customisations offer greater added value compared to pure online product configurators: customers can see, feel and try on the product, they can watch their individual product being created and they can take it home directly afterwards. You should use this to your advantage by developing and implementing targeted offers and promotions. Here are a few suggestions:
- Enable customers to use an online generator in the shop to create a product that they can collect later. Give them the same advice as if you were selling them the product in-store.
- Carry out promotions with artists, craftspeople, tailors, etc.:
- Engravers can embellish perfume bottles, jewellery, etc. with names or decorations.
- Embroiderers can apply personalised embroidery to textiles and accessories.
- Offer limited-edition shopping bags designed by artists that become must-have and collector’s items.
- Your customers may want to get creative themselves with a bit of help: give them the chance to print, punch, engrave, paint, …
Personalised experiences have been proven to increase customer loyalty, creating a greater bond between them and a shop, brand and product. They share the experience with others, for example on social media. Always bear in mind: the personal touch, good advice and great service are also key factors in making your customers happy. In this regard you are way ahead of online retailers.