How to drive foot traffic to a merchant’s brick and mortar store

How to drive foot traffic to a merchant’s brick and mortar store

If you are running a brick-and-mortar store, then foot traffic becomes a most important concern. There are several things that you can do to boost your foot traffic.

A well-maintained storefront

A well-maintained storefront can do a great job to appeal to your customers. You should sweep your storefront and clear your windows daily.

Your online presence

An easy-to-use website, with an SEO approach, can do wonders. The social networks in which you are going to focus your brand activity also play a vital role in a retail business.

Offer click and collect

This technique will help in both ways; increase foot traffic as well as increase online sales.

Hosting Events

Holding certain events can also become instrumental in boosting foot traffic as well as sales. This topic will be discussed in detail in later sections.

Contacts with influential people

Contacts with bloggers, YouTubers, and local journalists can also play a great role to promote your store and drive foot traffic.

Traditional advertising

Advertising in local newspapers, magazines, radio, or television can also play a big role to promote your store as well as driving foot traffic.


Digital advertising

Digital marketing is an affordable option to build buzz, even before you open the store. Facebooks ads and Google ads can play a vital role in the context of driving foot traffic.


Email marketing

Keeping your customers posted through emails informing them about exclusive offers is a popular technique to attract customers.


Creating procedures for your customers and employees

Activities such as return policies or whether to allow pets help you set standards for how you want people to interact with your business.


Develop a customer service plan

Customer service involves defining how you are going to help the customer solve their problems, even before they know they have them. For instance:

You need to think about how you are going to make shopping in your business simple and enjoyable.

Also, you need to reflect on how the shopping experience will be and how will you handle problems and grievances, if any.


Loyalty program

What incentives will you use to get people to come back and recommend your store?


Hosting a grand opening and other events.

This marks the date that you are officially open to your customers and present your business to the community.

Grand openings can include a small celebration with drinks, appetizers, music, and promotions that get customers excited.

Before the grand opening, you can also organize a small launch for family and friends that allows you to test if the store looks attractive, the reactions to the products and that the technical issues are working correctly.

The grand opening must be well attended, so you will have to turn to family and friends again, but you can do much more.

Start advertising campaigns as soon as you have a date planned, invite local press and neighboring businesses, create an event on Facebook, put out an ad in the local newspaper or radio.

Working with companies aimed at the same audience (but not competitors)  is also a good way to make yourself known.

If you prepare personalized or limited edition products for the inauguration, there will be a new incentive to come and browse.


The design of your store

The time has come to strategically plan the design of your point of sale.

The way you design your establishment will have a decisive impact on sales. A strategic design will welcome your customers, make them feel comfortable, and direct them throughout the sales area.

From the way, you present inventory to where you position the counter too, of course, the window displays, everything that customers see and experience needs to be planned strategically.

Imagine that a potential client walks past your door for the first time… Will he notice your business? What impression will he have of your store? Will he realize that there is something for him? Will you have a sense of confidence?

The physical environment and sensory perceptions (visual, auditory, olfactory, tactile) set the stage for the consumer experience.

It is time to translate your positioning statement into the elements of the space. Colors, textures, materials, objects, lights - everything transmits the philosophy of your company.

For this work, you can consult architects or interior designers but, if you decide to do it on your own, you will have to do your research to find inspiring ideas.

The planning of your store has five aspects to be taken care and these include the environment, the decoration, the architecture, the spaces (interior and exterior), and the presentation of the products.

Visit retail businesses, similar to the one you plan to open and also the different ones. Take note of items that work and others that don't.

A highlight is the shop windows. Try to think of them as a 24/7 free ad and make the most of it.

In addition, the showcase acts as a window into the store where some representative products are displayed to attract customers to the interior.

It is an opportunity to be creative and make a staging that captures the attention of the passerby and awakens their desire.


Hire a strong team and provide training

Hiring people takes a toll on your budget, so if you can handle it yourself at first, go for it.

But if you decide that you need to hire an employee, there are several things to be kept in mind.

A good team helps customers, provides excellent service, increases the probability of purchase, and generates loyalty, which further translates into billing.

A bad team turns customers away by contributing to a bad experience, causes lost revenue, and destroys reputation, resulting in business ruin.

So, the human team can make or break your business.

The other side of the coin is the environment and training your business provides to truly build a winning team.

The practice contributes to the mastery of any discipline and customer service is no exception. If you want your employees to be ready to deliver extraordinary service, you will have to guide them.

Organize a boot camp where you can practice and teach customer service skills through internships and role-playing, review store policies, describe your expectations, train staff on products and sales techniques.

Training builds security and confidence, which translates into excellent service.

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