Your reopening can be an opportunity to re-engage with customers and strengthen the brand loyalty relationship. But to strengthen that relationship, it's a good idea to put consumer expectations first. Here are some things to consider:
1. Communicate how you plan to open: Retailers want their customers’ first interactions with a re-opened store to be a positive one. If their experience is tarnished by not realizing a location is only open for curbside, for example, or not yet opened at all, they’re going to leave with a negative experience.
So, be thoughtful in how you plan to re-open and consider overcommunicating with your customers. For example, Apple was very explicit in how they planned to reopen their stores. When you visit their website, you can see all of the measures they’re taking to maintain a clean and safe store, as well as see the status of any of their stores. Making this information easy and available to customers is critical.
2. Don’t ditch e-commerce: You’ll be shifting gears back to brick-and-mortar operations, but don’t forget about digital. Having a solid e-commerce platform will still be essential to serving those consumers who aren’t ready to return to physical stores, while also helping continue to future-proof your operations.
Keeping Apple as the example, when you visit their “find a store” webpage, the first thing you’ll see is their re-opening approach. But directly underneath that is a notification that everything customers need is also available online, from products and services, to support and more. So even as they open their 506 retail stores, they’re still directing their consumers to an online experience.
3. Consider offering deals: Consumers assume retailers will offer deals and promotions to drive traffic back to stores. So it’s a good idea to think about how you can entice a consumer to shop with you, online or in-store. A couple of examples of promotions include:
- Word-of-mouth incentives: If a consumer reviews your product or store, consider offering a percentage discount off their next purchase
- Social media promotions: Consider hosting a contest on your social channels to drive awareness of products or niche and build your social following
- Friends and family referrals: Consider offering vouchers for shoppers referred by friends and family