by Ted Saul, Senior Staff Writer
It has been reported that businesses loses 800 to 900 million dollars each Friday the 13th due to the superstitious consumer changing their behavior for the day. Consumer buying behavior is defined as “the process by which individuals search for, select, purchase, use, and dispose of goods and services.” What if you as a business owner made some positive changes to modify your customer’s behavior? Now every business will have different variables and environments but here’s some general ideas to get started.
First, look at the layout and traffic flow within your store. We know there is a science applied to customer traffic flow. It’s based on Pareto’s law where approximately 80% of sales comes from 20% of product line. The strategic placement of merchandise is important and changing your customer’s behaviors by taking them a different route to their normal purchases may increase sales. It is no coincidence that milk displays at your favorite grocery store are typically on the back wall requiring your impulsive instincts to tour aisles of not so necessary items.
Secondly, how inviting is your store as a place to spend time? Is it comfortable and clean? Does the background music and volume level match your branding? The longer you keep customers in your store the better opportunity for a sale. Barnes and Noble made a wise decision in some stores to partner with Starbucks and it’s not unusual to see customer’s reading a book off the shelf while drinking coffee. There is a good chance they will buy that book too. Third, how about changing your customer’s behavior in how they connect and interact with your store by using social media.
Customers may not read your printed information regarding sales and special events, however they may respond to a tweet or text. For example, upon “legally” obtaining permission to text you could send a message offering an extra 10% discount for the first 20 customers that purchase a certain item. This may reduce your customer’s long sales cycle, by enticing them with savings. Facebook and Twitter accounts can also help to encourage the reluctant buyer to take advantage of the daily savings special. Getting to know your customer and watching how they select and purchase your products will be key to making the right changes. Use your observation skills and ask, “what if”.
Ted Saul is a business coach that assists with Business Plans and Project Management. He holds a master certificate in project management and has earned his MBA from Regis University. Ted can be reached on LinkedIn, TedS787 on Twitter or emailing Ted@tsaul.com .