The whole market is screaming the buzz words – “physical retail is dying!”, “go online!”, “e-commerce first!”, “omni/multichannel!”. Probably you’ve heard it many times. And each time you wondered – do I really need to sell my kidney to go digital with my boutique and save it from collapsing in the age of digital transformation?
Of course you don’t need to risk your health, but actually, you need to ask yourself another question. Why are businesses dying in general? Because they are not on the right market with the product that can satisfy this market. So… you are in trouble because people are moving from the market of physical boutiques to the Internet…
Data don't lie.
Buzzwords or no buzzwords – data don’t lie. Right now, over 51% of customers prefer to buy clothes online than in stores. Not so much, huh? But this number increases when we talk about millennials – it's up to 70%. The current growth rate of online sales is 14%... year by year. Shoppers using multiple channels represent up to a 30% higher lifetime value than those who use only one.
So wake up! We are living in the XXI century, so simply – you just have to go online or die trying. Hurry up - the future starts now, and without keeping up with customers who live a digital life and who choose simplicity, there is no chance to stand the competition of e-commerce. There are no shortcuts or ways around it. The days of customers walking around huge shopping malls are definitely over.
Old school vs. true school
Old style sales & marketing was simple but expensive. You were spending a lot of money marketing your offer to totally random people, probably most of them were just walking by your shop. Everything depended on just a few minutes in your boutique. After they left, you weren’t able to reach them anymore. And of course, forget about knowing anything about their preferences.
So just imagine how you could grow your business if you actually knew something about them? Where are they from? What do they like to wear? What colours do they prefer? The right answer to those questions would give a sky-rocket boost to your sales. And the Internet can give you all of those.
Why don't boutiques go digital?
Because their owners think that they can survive without an online presence (and I'm not talking about a Facebook profile with some cat memes). They think that it costs a lot of money, or they need some huge experience to take their shops to the next level. Or they simply think that having an online shop is enough.
Well… it’s not only this. Going digital could help you boost your sales and increase the engagement and loyalty of your customers. And it's simpler and probably less expensive to achieve than you think. Still, you have to learn a few new words such as iBeacons, uber-ization of shipping, snapchat-ization of shopping.
Why was Steve Jobs so successful?
Because he knew that you have to take care of every aspect of the customer experience, and it doesn’t start at the moment they open the doors of your shop. During the first years of Apple, he signed all the computer parts himself!
Your typical customer has at least a few devices – a phone, a computer, a tablet, maybe even a smartwatch. What does that mean for you the boutique owner? You have so many ways to reach them with a smooth, friendly, and easy shopping experience. Ladies first is not the smart way to enter the shop these days. Now, it’s mobile first.
Are you curious enough? Let's meet! Our next step is "Merging Offline and Online: A digital opportunity for physical fashion boutiques" event. Let us guide you through the mysterious paths of digital transformation in physical retail. We will help you find the most efficient ones, and hopefully convince you that apps, in-store technology, data analytics, e-marketing etc. are relatively easy to implement and cost less than you might expect.