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Tag Archives: tips for retailers

  • 5 Ways to Instantly Improve Your Gift Shop's In-Store Experience on a Budget

    As with most aspects of life, you don’t have to spend a lot of money to make a big impression. When designing your retail store layout, it’s more important to be efficient both in terms of cost and space than it is to blow your budget on unnecessary displays and products. Here are five simple ways to easily improve your in-store experience without breaking the bank.

    Less is more

    If working with limited square footage, it may sound counterintuitive, but decluttering your space will actually help eliminate overstimulation. Shoppers’ eyes are drawn toward cleaner displays that allow artisan gifts to shine, cutting down on the need to fill empty shelf space. This principle can be applied throughout the store, including at the register and in the window display.

     

    Light it up

    Drawing attention to you displays can be as simple as adjusting the lighting throughout the store. In addition to making sure all bulbs are working, the use of uplighting, spotlighting, and track lighting can all guide the customer visually to promotions and displays of featured products.

     

    Engage the senses

    Visual appeal is naturally at the top of any shop owner’s list, but don’t discount the other four senses that encourage customers to engage with the products, down to the music that pipes throughout the store. Free samples that you can touch and even taste are a small investment that go a long way, and you don’t have to be a parfumerie for your store to smell like anything other than cleaning products.

     

    Use resources you already have

    Chances are, you have accumulated a lot of creative packaging while stocking your store with wholesale artisan gifts. Rather than purchasing expensive shelving or display cases, put those empty crates and boxes to use by setting up a display or end cap, or even use old picture frames, corkboards, or hooks to display products in an eye-catching way.

     

    Think signage

    Printing and reprinting new signs for every promotion or sale can be an unexpected cost, so instead invest in chalkboards or even an electronic lightbox to display your rotating messages. What’s more, use QR codes for customers to scan to learn more about a product on your website rather than printing out bios for every new artisan.

  • 8 Ways To Encourage Repeat Business For Your Store

    In a time of online retailers, it’s important not to overlook the power of a brick-and-mortar store. While getting foot traffic in the door might not be the issue, it’s keeping customers engaged and coming back that proves to be challenging. As the tried-and-true formula goes: Understand your customer base and target market, look for ways to differentiate from your competitors, remain relatable and relevant, repeat. Here are some ways to foster that relationship, no matter the type of shop:

    Image courtesy of Getty Images

     

    Focus on Service

    Simply put, shoppers are much more likely to become loyal customers if you offer a better experience than your competitors. Provide an extra service that shoppers can’t get elsewhere, like contacting shoppers when products that are out of stock become available or offering a generous return policy. What’s more, properly training staff to be knowledgeable about products and makers keeps both employees and customers happy. Click here to read our blog post on service.

     

    Create a loyalty program

    Discounts work to draw customers in, but repeat visitors will come back time and time again if they are members of a loyalty program. Money off future purchases or even access to an exclusive event in store or online can often make the difference between whether a consumer shops with you or a competitor. Make the reward worthwhile and easy to obtain to motivate customers to reach it.

     

    Engage online

    Whether in the form of a blog, social media post, or email newsletter that encourages discussion among its customers, you can produce easy-to-digest content geared toward your readers, such as how-to guides, product spotlights, or gift giving guides for specific holidays. You can also entice your customers with new products, best sellers, or in-store giveaways on social channels to get them to come back to your store.

     

    Think convenience

    Offering free in-store pickup or multiple payment options are just two quick and easy ways to make the shopping experience more pleasurable and less painful for the customer. Hire an in-store expert who can offer complimentary consultations on product usage or free alterations or customization with purchase. Think value, not price.

     

    Create comfort

    Shopping doesn’t have to be an in-and-out experience. Encourage customers to stay a while by setting up a lounge area with free Wi-Fi and a charging station. Set up sampling stations or other ways to engage with the products. Sure, it’s fun to try on clothes, but “try before you buy” can work equally well with crafts or even technology.

     

    Offer classes or groups

    A craft shop that offers a knitting group, a fitness retailer that organizes a running club, a craft brewery that hosts yoga, cooking classes at a specialty food store, calligraphy lessons at the local stationery store—these are all simple but fun ways to bring the same consumers back on a regular basis and get them in front of your products.

     

    Engage in the community

    Take advantage of organizations that already exist and align with your store’s mission by sponsoring a local event or donating to a worthy cause that will get your company name in front of current and potential customers. Name recognition, especially in a charitable way, certainly won’t hurt your cause.

     

    Enlist help

    When all else fails, hire a mystery shopper whose job it is to give honest and unbiased feedback about the shopping experience. Sometimes, all it takes is a fresh set of eyes to walk through the whole experience from storefront to transaction to share how and why the shopping experience can turn shoppers into lifelong customers.

  • The Merchandising Corner: It's White-Hot In Here

    I’ve worked in all sorts of retail environments – apparel, home décor, online – and one thing they all have in common, they host a “white hot” event or marketing push. When you create a powerfully disruptive white display, whether stark white, shabby chic, vintage white, or somewhere in between, your customers will be moved.

    So why is ‘white-hot” a thing and how do you leverage it to your shop’s advantage?

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  • How to Set Your Store Apart This Holiday Season

    Gaining an edge over other shops in your community—that’s a common problem for Retailers. And during the competitive holiday season, the issue only intensifies.

    How do you set yourself apart? How do you make yourself more than just a shop?

    Events are a great way to showcase your shop in a new light. It makes being at your store less about shopping and becomes simply a time to learn and have fun. It also helps you create an emotional connection with shoppers, which should be right up there with revenue on your list of business goals.

    Luckily, many of the products on our site lend themselves to interactive in-store activities.

    Here are just a few.

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  • Who’s got your business' back in the State House?

    Owning a small business means constantly having all hands on deck. There’s tons to do in-store and online between inventory, purchase orders, and making sure everything is running as normal. Your list of day-to-day tasks can cause instant effects on your business. But what about all of the other factors that affect your business like community affairs, insurance, legislation, and policy? Do you have a handle on those? And if you don’t, where do you begin?

    If you’re not a member of your state's branch of the National Retailer Federation, you might not know there’s a group of people who make it their business to help your small business grow. Think of them as an incredibly knowledgeable friend who is looking out for your best interests and has connections to government. These organizations specialize in making policy briefings palatable, creating partnerships for their members that save them money, and providing representation for their members in local and national legislative bodies.

    Retail Tips from The Grommet Wholesale

    Retailer Associations are often annual memberships, which means you can opt in or out for each year, but the benefits are clear. You can expect assistance with health insurance cooperatives, credit card and payroll processing, and financial services just to name a few. Along with having advocates who work to promote pro-small business legislation, associations will notify you of relevant policy that is subject to change or debate and a portal to contact your local legislator directly on the issue. It’s a super easy super highway for letting your voice be heard when it comes to the issues that matter to you most.

    The Grommet Wholesale is a huge fan of the Retailer Association of Massachusetts and the activism they’ve done to extend state tax to out-of-state online retailers. It’s moves like this that will level the playing field and help our communities and local businesses thrive. In their own words, RAM’s top priorities are to “provide our members with valuable regulatory and policy briefings, money saving tools, and highly-effective representation on Beacon Hill.” We like the sound of that! In fact, The Grommet Wholesale has partnered with RAM so that members receive a discount on their orders just like Cambridge Local First.

    Having someone with your interests at heart is great. Having a team of people dedicated to creating space an opportunity for your business is the best case scenario. If you feel like you need a hand keeping up to date on state and federal policy, or you want to explore some money saving options for health insurance or payroll processing, talk to a representative of your state Retailer Association or check our their member benefits online.

     

    Are you a Retailer interested in sourcing innovative products for your store? Apply to The Grommet Wholesale here.

  • 7 Tips for Driving Traffic to Your Store During the Slow Season

    The holiday season is long gone and as a store owner you probably find yourself in a limbo period before the next big spending season that Mother’s Day ushers in. The challenge many store owners face during the slow season is simply driving traffic. Well, we at The Grommet Wholesale, have a few ideas.

    Retail Marketing Ideas From The Grommet Wholesale

    Host DIY nights. Offering your community educational opportunities in crafting, home improvements, or projects can pique interest without the pressure of a sale. People will show up because it is an interesting event and, when there, will naturally get an idea of what your store offers. Of course, getting a sale is what keeps the lights on so look at your inventory and see how you can use what you carry in the project or demonstration.

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