21 Şubat 2008 Perşembe


Have you ever been to a play? I remember taking the backstage tour at the Ashland Shakespeare Festival a number of years back and being absolutely astounded at the thousands of things that have to come together to create a make-believe world and then make that world come alive. Actors, understudies, costumes, sets, lighting, sound, music, ticket sales, ushers, stage crew- miss any one element and the entire production frays around the edges to the detriment of the entire effort. A successful play is a huge undertaking.

Apply that same logic to your own business. Whether you and/or your employees have a retail establishment, office, or any other form of direct contact with your customers, you have created an environment for them. Does this environment help or hinder the sales process? In other words, does your business tend to attract or repel customers?

Never forget that the environment in which you and your customers interact and transact goes way beyond simply having products on shelves. Does this environment constitute marketing? Absolutely, because marketing is all contact between your company and the outside world. What message is this aspect of your marketing saying about you and your business? Remember that confidence is the #1 reason why people buy from a business. Does your business foster confidence?

What does your physical layout look like? Well talk about this in more detail in later columns. For now, realize that simply rearranging items within your store can have a dramatic effect on sales. Want a fantastic example of absolutely brilliant product arrangement? Visit most any supermarket. The butter, milk, eggs, meat, etc. are all in the back, meaning that customers must run the gauntlet of everything else in both directions every time they visit the store. They wont buy everything every time and thats OK because repetition is one of the keys to making sales. Have you ever purchased something outside your normal shopping list? If so, then you know exactly what Im talking about.

Is your business clean, tidy, and well lit? If you dont care enough to sweep the cobwebs, take out the trash, organize the clutter, and have enough lighting, how can you possibly care about your customers?

Does your business delight or offend the nose? Smell is an extremely powerful tool that can stir desire or revulsion. Heres a tip: Assuming your business does not already give off scents (such as if you own a restaurant), try adding some tasteful and appropriate scent. Moderation is the key. You want the smell to be discernable without being even remotely overpowering. Do that one thing and I can almost guarantee that your sales will increase. By the way, if youre wondering how I can call a scent tasteful, recall that smell is the basis for most of our sense of taste.

How about that lighting? You may have 20/20 vision and be perfectly happy in near-darkness but not all your customers will feel that way. Safety and visibility aside, light can help create strong moods that can influence sales. They dont call it mood lighting for nothing. Did you know that the local supermarket uses special bulbs to make the meat and produce look more appetizing? Play with your lighting and you could literally see increased sales.

Our eyes are our single largest source of information about the world around us. How can you use color and texture to create a more appealing environment? Here again, moderation is critical. Too much color and texture and your store could well end up looking like the bright dazzle camouflage used on Allied shipping during World War Two. In this case, your customers overloaded eyes will not be able to focus on your products. You want just enough variety to spark and maintain interest, but not too much.

Making simple adjustments to your business environment can be fast, easy, cheap, fun, and very profitable. This article focuses on retail sales but is equally applicable to any direct company-to-customer environment, including vehicles. If youre not getting the results youd like from your environment, try making a few simple changes. The change to your bottom line could be dramatic.

Hiç yorum yok: