How’s Your Traffic These Days?

Have you given any thought to the fact that a generation of income earners may be doing less and less business with retail stores? And what that really means for retailers? This is not new, by any means, but have you thought about it?

A few days ago my good friend’s son, who is 29 years old, made an interesting comment to me. He said, “It’s amazing how much more I shop online now than I did a couple of years ago. My friends and colleagues do too!”

I asked him why that was. He said “Well, why not? It’s just so convenient and there are no hassles with anyone.”

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So, perhaps the modern consumer, many of them being young and upwardly mobile people, will just stay away from stores without thinking much about it. They don’t think they’re giving anything up. During the conversation, he didn’t complain about retail stores. In fact, brick and mortar stores didn’t even get into the conversation. That should be reason enough for retailers to be concerned. This young man and his contemporaries may not even be making a conscious choice…they’re just doing what comes naturally. Perhaps expectations of service and a great shopping experience have sunk so low that it doesn’t even warrant consideration anymore.

This young man, by the way, earns a very good salary, owns his own home and spends plenty of money on clothes, shoes, furniture, healthcare items, accessories…you name it. Most of it, clearly, online.

Now, at age 29, it’s doubtful that he would consider shopping in brick and mortar stores as a form of entertainment as a lot of people used to do…and some still do. So he’s not giving anything up. If you think about it entertainment is the only thing people may not be able to get when they order on line. For some that may continue to be a factor. Certainly they get selection, convenience, hassle free shopping, no sales associates to ‘bother’ them, easy check out without lining up, etc.

Of course, from our point of view, the customer is missing out on a lot of benefits by only shopping online. But, I’m afraid those benefits are being seen less and less by today’s consumer.

The huge question we absolutely must address, as retail management and owners – whether independents or chains – is “Why would people want to come into our stores and buy from us?” Sure we can enjoy our online sales as well, but what about all the money we have tied up in buildings, leasehold improvements, signage, fixtures, other equipment, etc.? And think of the hit employment numbers could take if all of our stores closed their doors! We need in store sales, don’t we?

If you haven’t asked yourself why people should come into your stores yet, don’t delay. The answer will help you to figure out what action you need to take right now to stay in business for the long haul…profitably. It’s not complicated! Don’t put it off.

 All the Success!


PS: Help your people learn how to keep your customers coming back to your store(s) and increase your loyal customer base. Get leaps and bounds ahead of your competition. Our Retail Selling Skills & Customer Fundamentals YourTime Self Study Course: and the Retail District Management YourTime Self Study Course:  are incredibly helpful tools and resources for you. Don’t delay…get on the right track today!


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