Are you worried your business is losing sales to online retailers?
While it may seem like more and more customers are purchasing their bras online, many of them are also making trips to the post office to return their orders.
With multiple size conversion charts online, confusing measure at home fit guides, and differences in sizing and fit from brand to brand, consumers are finding it harder than ever to find a bra that fits well from the comfort of their couch.
In fact, many women are still unaware of bra fitting and the specialty stores that offer it.
They might turn to Google first to find answers for their bra questions before contacting a local retailer.
This is one of the many reasons why it’s so important for lingerie retailers to claim their Google listing and maintain a website with at least the bare minimum of updated business hours and store contact information.
Consumers have to know you exist before they can visit your beautiful store.
While it might seem like brick and mortar retailers are losing out to online retailers, brick and mortar retailers have a game-changing advantage over online retailers.
Brick and mortar stores have a key advantage over online retailers: The customer can take their purchase home or wear it out of the store on the same day they purchase it.
While online retailers like Amazon are working on ways to get orders to customers faster, many of the items in their marketplace are still not eligible for Prime shipping.
Additionally, customers have to place orders before a certain time period in order to get same day shipping with a Prime membership.
For non-Prime members, same day shipping can be costly and in some cases not possible.
Additional examples overseas include Nordstrom, who charges $25 for next day shipping and $35 for Saturday delivery and Victoria’s Secret, who charges $18-$26 for next day express shipping.
Consumers are smart and know they have options when it comes to shopping.
Most importantly, local stores are more convenient and offer a more personalized service than online retailers.
Online retailers don’t have in person bra fitting experts and consumers can’t try on bras online.
This, in addition to the steep shipping costs, makes ordering last-minute items more of a hassle than a convenience.
Until online retailers are able to figure out a way to offer quicker, less expensive shipping and important in-store services such as bra fitting, brick and mortar store retailers will have the key advantage.
The Path to Success
Exceptional customer service, personalized follow-up, and consistency will lead you on the path to success over online retailers.
As a specialty store, attracting and engaging local customers is monumental to your business’s growth and success.
Additionally, if you have an online store as well, sending newsletters, posting updates regularly and answering comments and concerns on social media platforms, and providing valuable content for your customers through your blog are all important for remaining relevant and front-of-mind.
When your customers are shopping for new bras, you want them to think of you first.
With every customer, lingerie specialty stores have the opportunity to delight and convert her into a raving fan of the store.
After all, at the very core of the customer experience lies convenience and convenience is still one of the most valued aspects of shopping for customers.
When customers build a relationship with a bra fitting specialist, sales associate, or store owner, they’re much more likely to come back and shop again.
The same holds true when they have a memorable experience.
Raving fans write positive Yelp reviews, recommend your store to all of their friends, and repeatedly visit or place orders.
Making their experience as convenient as possible, whether you’re offering free shipping, free returns/exchanges, personalized service, phone orders, or on-call advice from bra specialists will cultivate loyal relationships and contribute to your store’s success.