Brick-and-mortar retailers can earn loyalty customer with exclusivity, personalization

Companies are now faced with the challenge of developing more effective customer satisfaction and loyalty programs that will keep shoppers coming to brick-and-mortar stores even though ecommerce often allows them to find the same items for less online.

Companies are now faced with the challenge of developing more effective customer satisfaction and loyalty programs that will keep shoppers coming to brick-and-mortar stores even though ecommerce often allows them to find the same items for less online. To combat the trend in which patrons treat a high street store like a show room for their online purchases, some businesses are bringing high-tech retail gadgets into stores, while others are deploying enhanced loyalty programs.

However, retailers may find they can encourage loyal customers to make the trip to physical stores when the company knows what its shoppers want and delivers those things exclusively, reports Forbes.

Successful brands know what customers want and deliver it

Long-standing apparel brands have been using this strategy to stand out from competitors for years, the source reports. Nordstrom, Sak’s and Bloomingdale’s are all department stores that offer similar products such as women’s, men’s and children’s clothes along with accessories and personal care products.

However, the stores cater to the needs of their consumer demographics by carrying items that reflect their customers’ budgets and preferences, the news source explains. For example, a high-end clothing store like Sak’s might carry the same brand names as discount retailer TJ Maxx, but the manufacturer might have produced different models for the stores – a better quality, higher-priced item for Sak’s and a simpler, affordable model for TJ Maxx.

Offer each customer base exclusive items

After businesses understand what customers want, the stores can encourage repeat shopping and loyalty by offering exclusive products through their brands, Forbes adds. If stores align with manufacturers, they can offer consumers items that can’t be found online or in other stores, thus regaining loyalty and control over price gouging.

Sears recently won back some shoppers after it started offering the Kardashian Kollection exclusively in its stores, according to the News Observer. The store has gained a reputation as a lower-end appliance department chain that has deterred shoppers like 29-year-old Sajde Kerimi from visiting locations. With the new line of clothing and improved merchandising that appeals to younger, more fashionable customers, the company is seeing rebounding interest.

Offering exclusive product lines isn’t a new strategy, Forbes points out, but these efforts can now be bolstered with multiple channels for collecting consumer data. When stores use social media channels and emerging retail technology to engage shoppers and leverage analytics, Fashion United reports, they can create campaigns that are tailored to their customers’ preferences and will help build long-term relationships.