How-To

Top 10 Retail Mistakes

Customers are what keep retailers afloat, so to speak.

Of course, without them, business goes down the drain.

Retailers sometimes don’t know what is driving their customers away, but their mistakes are right in front of them.

Are you losing customers and don’t know why?

A lot of the reasons why retailers lose their customers is because of the way their store looks, the ambiance, or atmosphere. Here are the top 10 most common problems with retail store atmospheres:

1. Loud and Obnoxious Music

Music does create a nice, soothing, shopping experience for customers…that is definite. However, loud and annoying music will send customers right back out the door. It can completely ruin a good shopping experience.

2. Handwritten Signs

No retail store should have handwritten signs. It shows a lack of professionalism and looks childish. Especially in this day and age where there is no end to what technology can do, one of the simplest things it can do is make a decent sign. Handwritten signs are difficult to read, and even if it does say “75% off,” a customer is still more likely to walk right by.

3. Poor Lighting or Lack Of Lighting

Make sure to replace any lighting that has burned out as soon as possible! Every area where customers walk through needs to have good lighting, and remember not everyone has good vision, so lighting is extremely important.

4. Unpleasant Odors

Depending on your store, there will be different smells. If your store is a garden supply store, there is no doubt that the smell of fertilizer will be floating around. But, if you are running a clothing boutique, the smell of fertilizer should not be the smell of your store, and if it is, you should have it checked out. Make sure to control the smell of your store.

5. Stained Floor and Ceiling

It is inevitable that accidents will happen; it is hard to avoid them. However, those accidents should not be visible to your customers. Often times when it rains, it leaks through the roof and onto the ceiling, creating those ugly brown stains. It happens quite often…doesn’t mean your customers should see them. You should consider hiring a professional cleaning service that will regularly clean the premises, and clean any stained areas.

6. Dirty Bathrooms

This is probably the BIGGEST problem of most retail stores. Bathrooms need to be spick and span! Polished and sparkling clean no matter what. Make sure that there are plenty of paper products, soap, and trash receptacles (which are emptied regularly) and is cleaned daily. Customers are known to leave retail stores solely based off of dirty bathrooms. And though it is difficult to control this, odors should be taken care of as best as possible.

7. Messy Dressing Rooms

Customers always hate having to step around left over hangers, clothes, trash, empty packaging, etc. It is quite annoying. This is also a good step towards loss prevention. You can keep track of what merchandise goes into the dressing room and what comes out by keeping it clean and organized.

8. Not Enough Shopping Carts/Baskets

Even if your store is too small for shopping carts or baskets, you should have some form of shopping basket; every retailer needs to have some form. If you want your customer to purchase more than one or two things, have something available to them to carry their shopping items in.

9. Crowded Aisles

Your store should be laid out in a comfortable style that is easy to navigate through. Retailers always want the best possible selection of merchandise for their customers, but don’t let that take over the entire store. Cramped and crowded stores are never favorites among customers.

10. Messy and Disorganized Checkouts

Register areas, like dressing rooms, need to be kept organized and clean. This is the area where the customer’s financial transaction takes place and they do not want to see anything that shows disorganization. Its bad business and it does turn customers off.