Some people believe that in the 21st century, the era of e-stores, e-commerce and everything e-, the time of traditional retail is finally over. Well, those people haven’t been to a real store lately, because if they were, they would see that it is no less crowded than it was few decades ago. All jokes aside, because of the convenience of buying online it is significantly harder today to lead a lucrative retail than it was back in the golden era. However, this only means that you should try more. Here are some successful retail habits that your store should most definitely nurture.
You need a lot of information
First thing first, you need a lot of information if you are going to succeed in business of any kind and retail is not an exception here. There are two types of information you need, the information on your customers and information on your competition (so that you can stay competitive with prices and retail trends). As for the customer information, a simple survey will suffice. This way you can find out what your customers think about your store, your prices, your merchandise and of course your staff.
When it comes to gathering information on competitors, you need to walk the thin line of what is legal. Going to another store as a regular customer to inspect their prices and methods of sale is always a good idea and there is nothing illegal here whatsoever. You could also take a bit simpler approach and just read the local papers, or talk to your mutual supplier. Whatever works for you, works.
Point of Sale (PoS) display
As for the sales techniques, there is nothing that could triumph over carefully chosen point of sale display. The truth is that not only price matters but the position of the item as well. For example, an expensive item is more likely to be sold if it is placed next to the even pricier one, since in this way it seems more affordable. Also, displays next to the counter are always most appealing. Seeing how your client already has a full bag and a wallet in their hand, they probably won’t be able to see a reason not to buy just one more thing.
Customer is the king
The golden rule of retail states that customer is always right. This being said, where most online retailers make mistake is in selling items that they are interested in and not their customers. If your customer wants something they need to get it. After all, you are a retailer and this is why you are here in the first place.
Last, but probably the most important of all is that your staff must be polite and helpful at all times. Cold and hostile cashiers can act as an extremely efficient customer repellent and this is something you most definitely don’t need. Because of this, when hiring make sure to look for people who just beam with confidence and optimism. Remember, your staff will become the face of your company so your customers will form their opinion towards your store based on them.
With just these few techniques, you can successfully elevate your store to a whole new level. Just remember to use all the help you can get, learn as much as you can and of course always present your customers with the ultimate retail experience.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Outsourcing Your Digital Marketing
In the hyper-connected world that we live in today, it’s a common occurrence for a smaller business to team up with other agencies in order to provide a full service. This gives them an opportunity to focus on their core tasks and keeps the business model quite simple. One of the most outsourced tasks (alongside IT, HR and customer support) is digital marketing. Now, digital marketing is an umbrella term, which means that you can still outsource a part of your marketing-related tasks while performing other tasks on your own. Regardless of what choice you make, there are advantages and downsides. Here are some of them.
1. Advantage: Getting the results much faster
The first thing you should understand about your digital marketing is the fact that you’ll be getting the results much faster than if you were to make an in-house team. The latter may take a long time to pull off, due to the fact that you need to hire staff, buy hardware and pay for software licenses, organize the team and draft a strategy on your own. Keep in mind that this is how long it takes without you waiting for the team to become experienced enough. Once you add this into the mix and realize that time is, indeed, a finite resource, you’ll realize that outsourcing gets you results much faster.
2. Disadvantage: Losing touch with your brand
The problem with outsourcing is that you’re losing personal touch with what your brand is all about. Sure, you know the starting point and you’re aware of the direction you want your brand to take, but you can never really know how your business is going to evolve over the course of time. Therefore, it wouldn’t be impossible for you to lose touch with your brand. In time, you might have trouble understanding what your organization is all about, which is about as bad as it gets.
3. Advantage: Experts perform specialized tasks
Some aspects of your digital marketing are fairly simple and easy to pull off as a DIY project. Others, nonetheless, may require skill, experience and technical prowess in the field. Add to this the need for specialized tools and years of experience using it and you might just get the full picture. Sometimes, it’s not just about the fact that you couldn’t do it. It’s about the fact that you couldn’t do it as effectively as an expert could. A perfect example of this is the art of social media analytics, which lays as the basis of your future digital marketing strategy. A slight misinterpretation here could lose you a small fortune in the future, which is why it’s best left to experts.
4. Disadvantage: Changing partners
Even if you’re happy with the choice that you’ve made when outsourcing, not a lot of partnerships go the distance. You might soon be forced to change partners for several reasons. For instance, even though you’re satisfied with the service they’re providing, your business has ever-growing digital marketing needs that they can’t keep up with. Other than this, a mistake (a partnership ending one), could happen on both ends, which is why they might be the ones to cancel the collaboration. Either way, switching to a new partner might be an occurrence that your business, your brand and your public image might come to suffer for.
5. Advantage: Simplicity
The last thing you need to understand is the fact that the simplicity of your business operation plays a huge factor when it comes to your chance of success. This is especially true for inexperienced or first-time entrepreneurs. The more complex your business structure is, the bigger the chance is that something will go horribly wrong.
Moreover, by outsourcing tasks that you’re ill-equipped to handle, you’ll get your hands free to focus on those tasks that you do know quite a bit about. Let’s be realistic, all the areas that are usually outsourced are additions to your business but your ability to provide a service or sell a product serve as a core of your business model. Put simply, outsourcing will help you set your priorities straight.
As you can see, some of the above-listed advantages and disadvantages are universally true for outsourcing, in general, regardless if it’s digital marketing that we’re talking about. On the other hand, it’s also one of the areas of your business that you’re the most likely to outsource, which is why we felt obliged to go into the specifics, where it was necessary. The choice is up to you but now, at least, you know what you’re up against.
Social media giants, Facebook urges publishers to leverage creative content for improved revenue
Social media giants, Facebook, has called on publishers to leverage on creative content for better revenue generation.
Facebook’s Strategic Media Partnerships Manager for Sub Sahara Africa, Jocelyn Muhutu-Remy, made the call while speaking at a session tagged ‘Art of monetizing good storytelling through the social media’ hosted by The Guardian during the Social Media Week at Victoria Island, Lagos.
“Propose what is different and unique to you. It is not about the followers you have but the uniqueness of your content. I advise starting by promoting your page using your location to reduce pay.”
Muhutu-Remy cited an example of a publisher on Instagram whose main contents were on natural hair care and maintenance for women and urged social media publishers to follow suit.
She added that brands would only be attracted and convinced to partner and invest in a publisher whose contents is specific and specialized.
Storytelling is about engaging your audience and ensuring they can relate with your content subject,” Mutuhuru-Remy said.
Other speakers at the session moderated by Guardian Life editor, Chidera Muoka, were Instagram publishers, Sisi Yemmie, a food blogger and Comedian Wofai Fada.
Wofai Fada, a comedian, said passion is key for any publisher that wants to thrive in the digital publishing space.
“It comes easy because it’s something I love doing. Passion is necessary to push one further.”
She advised publishers to be consistent and continually renew strategies to communicate with their audience.
Sisi Yemmie, a food blogger, said specialization in Instagram publishing has given her an edge in digital publishing.
She urged other publishers to harness Google analytics tool to examine the interests of their audience, as well as means to grow their platforms.
“Your social media analytics helps you decide what types of contents you should post and what time of the day you should post. You need to be aware of what type of content is to be promoted, but be creative and dynamic too,” Sisi Yemmie said.
Tech Trends That Are Changing Legal Industry
There’s a statistic that about 89 percent of lawyers use the mobile to check their email on a daily basis, which is a lot above the average for the general population. Add to this the fact that 34 percent of lawyers use tablets in the courtroom and that 27 percent of law firms have a legal blog and you might start getting the full picture. The world of technology and the legal industry are tightly intertwined. This means that every new invention and tech trend changes the landscape of the legal industry for better or worse. With that in mind, here are several tech trends that are making a massive change as we speak.
1. The blockchain technology
The reason why this, relatively new, trend could introduce such a change, is due to the fact that it can be a basis for the phenomenon known as self-executing contracts (smart contracts). Through this computerized transaction protocol, you can create a scenario in which after a certain party makes a certain payment or meets a certain requirement, it receives a certain reward for it. With the help of blockchain technology, such methods would become a lot more reliable and less likely to be abused or misused.
2. Technology training
The increase in the amount of legal software getting developed each year is a clear indicator that it soon might be impossible to practice law without an arsenal consisting of various legal tools. The problem with this lies in the fact that a huge portion of the legal world lacks the training to use these tools in the right way. Sure, this is far from a complex tech trend you might have expected, yet, if this change is to become a systemic one, it needs to come from above. Namely, law firms need to make these courses and training sessions mandatory for employees in key positions.
3. Online mock trials
Benefits of a mock court trial are numerous. For instance, they help keep your team sharp and increase the risk awareness of your clients. Some firms, on the other hand, use these mock trials in order to establish the dollar range for the settlement, which also makes a massive difference for your bottom line. Furthermore, you get to test your arguments and see which topics need further clarification. Mock trials can be held in person, though nowadays there are platforms that offer this service online. Chances are, this feature will be used more and more in the future.
4. Online answering services
The first contact with the client is incredibly relevant but, at present, clients are more likely to contact a law firm via their website than via their landline. This is why online answering services and the level of implementation of the AI technology in them could be incredibly important. Moreover, it broadens the concept of the online legal business, due to the fact that clients don’t really have to come down to the office in order to get a legal tip or a quote. The simplest queries can be solved immediately via this service.
5. The paperless approach
In the past, the law industry was one of the most paper-hungry fields out there. All those contracts (and their copies), materials and transcripts required thousands of sheets for every single case. Nowadays, we’re looking towards a paperless future. The funny part of this whole ordeal lies in the fact that judicial and regulatory systems are the ones insisting on this and it’s on lawyers and legal firms to adapt. Sure, this may seem as logical and pragmatic, yet, for a lot of organizations, this change is coming at too fast a pace.
Of course, there are some statistics that aren’t as optimistic. For instance, about 22.6 percent of law firms have no social media presence whatsoever. In this day and age, such a trend is really hard to imagine, though obviously it is present. This alone goes to show that there’s much room for improvement. The above-listed five trends are just some of the examples how.
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