The Lost Art of the Follow-Up


In my experience at Sharn Enterprises, Inc., I have encountered different situations that deal with client building, customer relationships, and overall account management.  The most important I have come to realize is the art of the follow-up.

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What sparked my in-depth thought about the follow-up was an email I received from a potential customer.  It read,

“I will stay in touch.  I am sure we can do some things together and I appreciate your efforts and follow-up.  It’s a refreshing change!!”

This note not only made my day, but also got my wheels turning.   If I can provide a “refreshing change” for a customer who is not used to follow-ups and attempts to make an effort, then Sharn Enterprises gains an opportunity to earn new business. Thus, when you’re not reaching out to a potential or even a current client, you may miss a potential opportunity and that client may take their business elsewhere.  GoTo Market Strategies (2014) supports this and states, “only 50% of marketing leads have received a follow-up from sales or channel partners, making it the top reason a product wasn’t purchased.”

The definition of a follow-up is when you check-in with a customer or client to give them a heads up, update, or even a general hello.  The follow-up can also take on different hats, including being a marketing boost.  For example, a once booming client may have lost touch with your organization for no specific reason, just plain evolution.  Reaching out could remind a client of your services and help them realize you are just the right person to help with an upcoming project.

Follow-Up

You see, the follow-up is sometimes unexpected, unwarranted, and ignored.  In other instances, the follow-up is welcomed, unexpected (in a good way), and appreciated.  And the latter version is where your company (and Sharn Enterprises, Inc.) maximizes its results.

As a marketing and sales professional, I want to be known as the person that makes the extra effort.  I want to my client to know that I care and I am willing to go the extra mile.  I do not want to be apart of the other 50% and lose potential business.

As I get off my soapbox, here are some ways that you and your sales team can increase productivity by going back to the basics, by bringing back the lost art of the follow-up:

1. Send an email– Do not just cut and paste.  Write a thoughtful note that doesn’t seem like Siri was the author.

2. Write a letter– Once again, no copying and pasting.  Key word here is “write.”  A hand-written note shows consideration and time was taken in order to really delve deep into thought.  A letter is personal, warm, and is an extremely thoughtful follow-up approach.

3. Pick up the phone- If emailing or writing a note seems too trivial for your specific customer, give them a ring.  A phone call allows for the inflection of your voice to be expressed.  If you’re excited about an upcoming project you are working on for that client, it will be heard in your voice.  Most importantly, be yourself.

4. Send follow-up information right after a meeting– During your meeting, write down notes for yourself.  For example, when I meet with a new client, I write down notes as well as detailed data so I am able to mock-up a custom display idea right after the meeting.  You are human; you can’t remember every detail, so writing notes down can help recall all key points discussed.

5. Keep an eye out for the small things– During your initial meeting, keep an eye out for body language, words, or expressions that piqued your customer’s interest and got them excited to work with you.  Refer back to these in your follow-up approach.

6. Agree– If you agree with a point made by your customer, let them know!  This builds trust and lets the client know you are listening and on the same page.

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At Sharn Enterprises, Inc. we have seen the follow-up truly work.  Like my dad always says,

“If you try and don’t succeed, it’s better than not trying at all.”

For more information on Sharn Enterprises, Inc.’s custom POP displays and store fixtures, please visit http://www.sharndisplays.com or call 815-464-9715.

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Shopping Habits: A Millenial vs. A Baby Boomer


At Sharn Enterprises, Inc., our goal is to design and manufacture a custom POP display that fits your marketing and visual merchandising needs.  We also find it a best practice to stay current with industry and shopping trends.  How better to do so than to interview two ends of the shopping spectrum; our resident 23 year-old fashionista/Marketing Intern Chelsey Heft, and the president of Sharn Enterprises, Inc./POP expert, Roger Wandersee.  These two have many reasons to go out shopping, and some reasons intertwine and others differ.  One thing both parties have in common? Find out for yourself below:

 (#1)  How would you describe yourself as a shopper and consumer?

Female Millennial: I am the type of person who is organized, goal-oriented and also happens to shop on a regular basis.  You could say I am your typical “girly-girl” but I am very simplistic; I enjoy the simple things in life. When it comes to the color of my clothing, I usually stick with neutral colors that don’t stand out.   What I purchase also depends on where I am shopping at and how it’s presented.

Male Baby Boomer: I am an “aging male baby boomer” and since I am in business, I try my best to stay current.  I try to look as good as I can for my age, but my wife buys most of my clothes and other necessities because she has much better taste than me.

(#2) What kind of “mood” are you in when you shop for different occasions, and how does that affect your choice?

FM: There are times when I go out shopping and I don’t exactly need clothing; it’s more along the lines of household items. Whenever I am out shopping for household items, I find that if I have a budget, I always end up going a tad over.  I go for the name brands and the quality rather than what is the cheapest on the shelf.  Same goes for shoes and clothing.

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MBB: I don’t like to shop for my own clothes, because I’m not good at it.  So when I do shop for myself, I’m usually not happy about it.  Surprisingly, I like to grocery shop.  I suppose that’s because I like to eat.  I often ask my wife if she needs anything from the grocery store, so I get what’s on her list and a bunch of other stuff that I just saw and wanted.

(#3) Regarding clothing, I noticed that some stores put matching women’s outfits together, while other stores don’t.  How does that affect you while shopping?

FM: If there is an area in the store that is well put together, it is more likely that I will lean towards that brand because of how the company has put their products on display.  If I cannot find any other outfits that “speak” to me, then I am probably going to move on.

MBB: I really prefer clothing stores that put matching products together.  I’m kind of a guy who needs to see something together to “get it.” If I have to figure out a match, I usually pick out one piece, and then ask the sales person to help me match it.

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(#4) When shopping, do you find it helpful when a sales associate is there to help? Many large stores have done away with it.

FM: Most times I don’t need help finding clothing or outfits that go together.  However, when it comes to fixing up a room in my house, I definitely ask for help.  It is nice to know that associates in stores are willing and able to help. With smaller boutiques, I’ve noticed the employees are very willing to help you right when you walk in.

MBB: I resent not being helped! I don’t much care for “self-serve.” It seems like only the “high-end” or home improvement stores offer individual help anymore. If I’m not looking for help, I will shop online.

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(#5) What are your views on shopping online?

FM: I don’t like shopping online.  You never really know what you’re going to get until you’ve already received it.  However, if I do shop online for a product, I always read the reviews.  If you don’t read the reviews, you could end up with a bad product.  I find that when purchasing items via the internet, American-made items are one’s that last much longer, compared to the items that are made elsewhere.  I feel that when purchasing an American-made product, it is money well spent!

MBB: I like to shop on the internet if I’m looking for a specific product and likely won’t have questions.  Such things as a book, flowers, candy, etc. that you’re sending to someone as a gift are examples.  Most of my internet shopping is around Christmas.  If I know exactly what I want to buy, then I just go online and get it. It helps me avoid the malls.

(#6) Are you willing to pay more for convenience and the speed of the transaction?

FM: If I am in a rush and need to be in and out rather quickly, sure, I will spend a little more. On any other given day, I would have to say that I wouldn’t spend more because of the convenience.  You never want to buy something just because “you had to have it.” Always keep in mind the longevity of the product, clothing item, and/or shoes being bought.

MBB: Being a “baby boomer,” price is not important.  As you know from the news media, we “baby boomers” only care about ourselves! (Just kidding) Of course price is important, but like most other people, I will pay a little more sometimes for convenience.

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(#7) How important is the visual and what attracts you to a particular product?

FM: If there is a good display that makes the clothing look more enticing, that is what causes me to think “Wow, I want to buy that!” There is great importance to being visual. Just like with food, we eat with our eyes first.  If we see something that looks appealing, we are more likely to eat it or in this case, purchase it.

MBB: Many of us old guys lack imagination, so the visual is very important to us. We like to see how things go together, or perhaps how they work. Many displays now come with some type of video that helps demonstrate the product. A well thought-out display is also good for the merchant because it keeps the products together and utilizes valuable store space.

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(#8) When do you “roam” a store versus getting in then getting out? Why?

FM: When I know I am on a time crunch, I am in and out and get what I need.  On the flip side, when I know that I have time, I roam around and do some window shopping.  It’s always nice to be able to walk and look around.  In a sense, it’s almost relaxing.

MBB: I only roam around when I grocery shop. I’m looking for that next best thing for the grill, or the special snack I want after dinner.

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As a business, it’s important to know your customers. Who do you appeal to?

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For more information about our products and services, please visit our website at www.sharndisplays.com  

“A Proud American Manufacturer”

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Father’s Day 2015: 8 Gift Ideas for Dad


Back on July 10th, 1910, the governor of Washington decided to proclaim the first ever “Father’s Day.”  However, it was not until Mother’s Day became a nationally recognized holiday that Father’s Day became official 58 years later.  Every third Sunday in June, families celebrate that special guy in their life and show their appreciation through actions as well as gifts.  Most fathers claim that they are easy to please, but on the inside, they would love a thoughtful present.  That’s why we here at Sharn Enterprises have come up with a list of possible gift ideas for dad that will make his day special, while showing you some of our exceptional POP custom displays.

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1. Golf Gear

Do you have a dad that loves to relax on the weekends by heading to the green?  Any dad who loves golf would appreciate a specialty club, some new golf balls, gloves, golf shirt, or even a golf towel.  These gifts would be a great idea for any dad who is active and has been itching to take a weekend getaway to the nearest golf course.

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2. Leather Goods

Do you have a dad that double as a businessman?  Does he like the finer things in life?  Then maybe your pops will like a new leather wallet or belt.  More practical than flashy, a fresh, new accessory will allow your dad to practice the saying, “out with the old, in with the new.”

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3. Power Tools

A good gift for the handyman in your life would be a brand new power tool or even tool chest, which would make any father feel useful as well as appreciated.  This gift will hit all the bases, but just make sure your dad knows how to use them safely!

10.7 Power Tool Display

4. Watches

Does your dad have trouble remembering schedules and being on time?  A new watch might be a good idea for a dad like likes to be on trend, but also might need extra help in the time department (Mom will thank you for this one!)

4-Piece Watch Display

5. Fishing Gear 

Does your dad love the outdoors?  Then a simple, go-to gift maybe some fishing and hunting gear.  Head to the nearest Bass Pro Shops (or another outdoorsy store like Cabela’s) and incorporate your dad’s personal style into your picks.  He will appreciate the thought as well as rock the coolest fishing pole of the bunch on his next big trip.

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6. Music Gear

Does your dad like to sing or have jam sessions?  A dad with an ear for music might enjoy a new guitar, picks for his current guitar, speakers, or new headphones.  Not only will you bring out his creative side, you can enjoy the tunes together!

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7. Electronics

Is your dad always on top of the electronics game?  Splurge on a HD big screen for his man cave, a new remote control, or even a speaker system.  Any of these options will definitely gain you the title of “favorite.”

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8.  Spirits 

Is your dad a connoisseur of fine wine and spirits?  Purchasing dad a nice bottle of his favorite alcoholic beverage might be a nice idea for the father who likes to take a load off and enjoy a drink on a night off.

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No matter what category your dad fits into, (sporty, classic, rugged, professional or musical) there is always a perfect gift out there for your father or grandfather.  We encourage you to spend time with your family, especially your dad.  The jack-of-all-trades in your life deserves something that will make him smile and feel appreciated on that third Sunday in June.  Father’s Day 2015 is officially June 21st, so start planning!

We hope you enjoyed seeing a few samples of our custom displays and hope we can serve you in the future.

www.sharndisplays.com

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For more information on our products and services be sure to check out our website at www.sharndisplays.com

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“A Proud American Manufacturer”

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Presidents’ Day 2015


Presidents Day

With Presidents’ Day today, Monday, February 16th, we need to all take a step back and think what Presidents’ Day is all about.  Yes, most of us view it as a day off school or off work, but what is the real meaning behind Presidents’ Day?

Presidents’ Day was established back in 1885.  Surprisingly enough, it was not always known as “Presidents’ Day”.  This day was originally created to honor George Washington’s birthday and was celebrated on his exact birthday, February 22nd.  This became the first holiday to celebrate the life of an individual American that is classified as a national federal bank holiday.  The date did not become known as ‘Presidents’ Day until after it was moved as part of 1971’s Uniform Monday Holiday Act, which was an attempt to create more three-day weekend’s for the nation’s workers.  Although the third Monday in February is still listed as “Washington’s birthday” on official calendars, Presidents’ Day is now known as a day to celebrate all United States Presidents, past and present.  Presidents’ Day is used by many patriotic and historical groups as a date for staging celebrations, reenactments, and other such events.

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Many states require that their public schools spend the days leading up to Presidents’ Day teaching their students about the accomplishments of the presidents, often with the focus on the lives of George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, who happen to be the most recognized leaders.  Abraham Lincoln is often named the number one most influential president due to his actions leading to the abolition of slavery.  Lincoln is then followed by Franklin Delano Roosevelt, with his recognition in leadership throughout World War II and his hard work to end the Great Depression.  The third most influential president known is, George Washington for becoming the first president of the United States, setting the precedents that would be later followed by other presidents.

So, from here at Sharn Enterprises, Inc, we encourage everyone to remember and celebrate the past and present presidents of the United States this Presidents’ Day.

After all, we are a proud American manufacturer!

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For more information about our products and services, please visit our website at www.sharndisplays.com

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From Beginning to End: How We Create Your Custom Display


Creating a custom display from start to finish is an exciting, yet difficult task for a designer and a manufacturer.  Unlike a stock display store, Sharn Enterprises, Inc. builds custom displays out of various American materials and is a one-stop shop, with everything made in-house and on-site.

That is where our American made promise comes in.  Everything manufactured in our plant is Made-in-America, which helps support the local economy and provide jobs here on U.S. soil rather than overseas.  Many people also feel that American made products are of the highest quality.

That’s why we here at Sharn wanted to give you a little bit more insight on how we handle a custom display project.

Although every experience with a new or current client is different, these are the usual steps taken in order to complete a custom point-of-purchase display made just for you and your products.

Consult

A customer might have a design in mind for their custom display, or have no idea at all!  And that’s quite alright, because our designers have the experience to come up with a design idea that reflects your brand. After an initial call, we usually schedule a meeting with you to get a better idea about what you are looking for.

Shaking Hands

Conceptualize

After a meeting (either in person, Skype, or on the phone), a designer will come up with a few different display concepts according to the client’s specifications. We know you have a budget, and the designer will keep that in mind when choosing types of material and the kinds of customization required.  We use the latest AutoCAD software to create your display and render it out to make it look like it will in-store.

CADD Drawing

Estimate

After a client decides which custom display they like for their brand, we will estimate the cost of the display based on the quantities he/she may be looking to order. More often than not, the more displays ordered, the more the price per display will go down.  Below is an example of a quote we will send for your approval.

 

Three tier adjustable travel display Estimate

Prototype

Now this is the fun part.  You actually get to see your display come to life!  We manufacture your prototype in-house and then ship it to you so you can see it in person.  Does it reflect your brand?  Does it catch your eye?  Is it everything you hoped for and dreamed of? If we don’t get it right the first time, we will revise.

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Re-Engineer & Build

Sometimes your prototype is exactly what you are looking for. Other times, it needs a few revisions.  And that’s okay.  We want your display to be perfect!   If you are looking for a nip there and a tuck there, we will redesign and re-prototype until both parties reach a mutual agreement.

As you can see here, three different designs were prototyped until an agreement was met.

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Make Decisions

You decide on the display concept and prototype and place your order with us.  You choose what quantity are you looking for and when the you need the project needs to be completed by.  Our manufacturing plant starts producing your parts and puzzle is almost finished.

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Ship

When we say we are a one-stop shop, we mean it!   We fabricate a custom box for your display along with an instruction sheet for whoever is putting together the display in-store.  Once you let us know your date, the display will be ready to be filled with your product.

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So what’s stopping you from your own custom display?  Contact Sharn today to get started.  We can’t wait to work with you!

For more information about our products and services, please visit our website at www.sharndisplays.com.  Also, “like” us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter!

 Sharn Enterprises, Inc.

“A Proud American Manufacturer”

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Retail 2014: A Look Back into the Year of the Consumer


2014

2014 was the year of the Ice Bucket Challenge, Pharrell’s “Happy”, Disney’s “Frozen”, and the infamous Oscar selfie featuring Ellen Degeneres, Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence and other famous celebs.  On the other hand, in the world of retail, 2014 could be labeled as the year of the consumer experience. 

No matter where, when, how and why a person purchased a product, it was all about the process being fast, easy, and simplified.  There is no doubt that consumers expect the best of the best when it comes to customer service and experts across the board say that currently, “the power has shifted from retailers to consumers,” and the customers are calling the shots.  They have won the battle of pricing, shipping, and overall satisfaction when it comes to a purchase decision (BWP Group).

And there’s no stopping this trend.  Americans are consistently shopping and the numbers are growing.  The amount of total spending has risen this year, around 0.7% in November despite feeble Black Friday sales (Census Retail Sales Report).

With the constant evolution of the consumer experience, there is no doubt that growth in technology, social media, customization, and more will continue.

Here’s a list of the top most memorable moments in retail for 2014:

Apple Pay

Who would have thought we would be reaching a time where a smartphone doubles as a wallet?  Officially introduced on September 9, 2014, Apple Pay could possibly become the norm within a few years span.  But some critics are uncommitted in the matter, stating, “The world today is still in an early adoption phase with regard to new payment methods and mobile wallets, and retailers still have to contend with EMV and mag-stripe data and advanced threats” (Gothard).

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Others suggest it will take much longer to become the standard way of pay.  Currently, only 220,000 stores have the point-of-sale terminals that can accept contact-less payments like Apply Pay.  Even though that may sound like a lot of stores, it is not as widespread as it could be, leaving out the other 6 million retail stores nationwide (Forbes).

The fact is, Apple pay is out there, and it’s a possible revolution in the world of the digital payment.

Job Stability

Retail is growing and so are the jobs in the industry.

In fact, statistics from 2014 show that there are 3,793,621 million retail establishments that provide 42 million jobs.  The industry also supports 5 million logistics jobs, 4 million management jobs, 2 million health care and service jobs, 2 million finance, insurance, and real estate jobs, and 800,000 technology jobs (NRF).

Chief Economist of the National Retail Federation, Jack Kleinhenz, said, “The economy is progressing toward sustainable growth with employment gains key to improved confidence and self-reinforcing economic growth.”  That growth can be seen this past October as well, with over 22,000 jobs added to the retail industry (NRF).

E-Commerce

Currently, 85% of people state that their mobile device is a central part of their lives.  That device along with other forms of online e-commerce is increasing.  According to Forrester’s May 2014 research, U.S. retail sales are expected to grow from $263 billion (2013) to $414 billion (2018), at a compound annual growth rate of 9.5%.

A recent survey also found 63% of consumers planned to use a laptop or home computer to make purchases or research items this past holiday 2014 season, up 16 percentage points from last year (Accenture).

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In strictly online sales this past Black Friday and Thanksgiving 2014, consumers set new online records with $1.33 billion and $2.4 billion in sales, respectively (MarketingLand.com).

Taking a look at e-commerce powerhouse, Amazon, you can purchase items with the utmost of ease.  With the Amazon Prime feature, consumers can purchase a single item with a click of a button.  If you have not heard about Amazon Prime, it is Amazon’s shipping service where for a yearly fee, as a member, you get free shipping on any item you buy within that year; no matter how many items you buy, big or small.   That’s a huge incentive to buy different products online without hassle.

Smart Service

The self-service theme was also huge in 2014.  According to RetailCustomerExperience.com, self-service kiosks empower customers, create opportunities to up-sell, increase time for staff to provide personal service, and simplify the supply chain (2014).  Just look at the current collection of self-service machines.  This includes express checkouts at grocery stores, the Coca-Cola Freestyle Machine, almost all frozen yogurt shops, DIY check-outs in hotels, and many more.  Smart service is an incentive for the consumer (saving time) and the retailers (saving money) and there is no doubt the self-service trend is here to stay.

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Technology Expansion

Have you seen more iPads in stores or sales associates holding them, ready and eager to help?   These iPads as well as your own mobile devices encourage interactivity, engagement and social sharing inside the store environment.

In addition, Walmart’s new smartphone apps made a splash in the world of technology and retail this year.  According to the mega-retailer, its “app-wielding customers make twice the shopping trips per month and spend 40% more than non-app users” (Fast Company).  With those types of numbers, it’s certain that Walmart’s smartphone efforts are effective.  Other ideas and improvements the area of shopping marketing at Walmart in the future include, “the ability to guide customers (via GPS) directly to products in its cavernous stores, and even let them skip the checkout line and scan and pay for items with their smartphones” (2014).  Sounds appealing, right?

Another technological advantage is a retail store knowing that a consumer is currently at their location and texting a promotion right to his/her smartphone.  Does this take it too far?  In our opinion, it is scary but satisfying.  Having a store know you are inside it and showing promotions takes the guess-work out of looking up the sales on one’s own.  The downside for consumers?  You spend money you might have not spent.  The upside for retailers?  More sales.

Social Media Madness

This year, Target launched “Awesome Shop” which is a site that showcases the store’s best reviewed and most pinned items.  The “Awesome Shop” idea was formulated with Pinterest in the back of the developer’s minds.  Target sent out a press release with their clearly stated goal.

“This curated crop of trending items is a shoppable visual catalog that inspires gift ideas and helps you discover cool stuff that everyone currently loves” (Target).

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Going onto “Awesome Shop” gives the consumer the feel of a bulletin board, with the functionality of an online store.   Similarly to Pinterest, those people who visit “Awesome Shop” can see what is the most sought after and trending gifts, helping shoppers feel more connected in more than one space (VendHQ).

Speaking of Pinterest, the social media platform is leading the pack when it comes to influencing purchase decisions.  In fashion and retail, 18% of content engagement on the site is driven by brands.  Pinterest shoppers also spend significantly more per checkout, averaging between $140-$180 per order.  They also own America’s trust; 81% of US consumers trust information and advice from Pinterest (DigiDay).

Mass Customization

People loved their custom-made products in 2014.  Whether it was etching a name into a drinking glass or a cutting board (check out our friends at Words With Boards), we saw the rise in custom-for-you sales.  DIY e-commerce and custom-made website, Etsy, surpassed $1 billion in sales in 2013, and we are still waiting to hear the stats for 2014.  2014 was the year we moved out of the era of the “mass and the cheap,” and into the age of “luxury and made for me” (Now and Next).

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About Sharn Enterprises, Inc:

Sharn Enterprises, Inc is no stranger to the lover of a custom product.  Since 1974, we have been designing and manufacturing custom displays for retail environments.  Our clients and customers realize that a stock display just doesn’t cut it when it comes to selling products in brick and mortar stores.  If you are looking for a custom permanent or semi-permanent point-of-purchase display for your products or retail store, check us out at www.sharndisplays.com!

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Sources:

http://www.vendhq.com/retail-trends-and-predictions

https://nrf.com/advocacy/retails-impact

http://useconomy.about.com/od/demand/f/Retail-sales-statistics.htm

http://multichannelmerchant.com/marketing/channel-integration/5-retail-customer-experience-predictions-2014-05022014/#_

https://www.pinterest.com/pin/409194316117812688/

http://www.forbes.com/sites/roberthof/2014/12/16/apple-pay-gets-more-bank-support-but-it-still-needs-a-lot-more-stores-to-succeed/

http://m.computing.nqlnginx.incbase.net/ctg/news/2364439/will-apple-pay-finally-make-digital-payments-the-norm

http://money.usnews.com/money/personal-finance/slideshows/10-surprising-facts-about-modern-consumers

http://marketingland.com/black-cyber-weekend-boom-much-109474

http://www.retailcustomerexperience.com/static_media/filer_public/98/1e/981e019a-d765-4708-8450-bcb2f94461fc/four-benefits-for-retailers-and-customers-from-self-service-kiosks_to-launch.pdf

http://www.eater.com/2014/10/30/7131597/technology-restaurant-increase-diners-approve-apps-tablets

http://www.post-gazette.com/business/2014/10/26/Retailers-use-smartphones-and-other-smart-devices-to-upgrade-shopping/stories/201410260062

https://nrf.com/news/retail-industry-adds-22100-jobs-october

http://www.exacttarget.com/sites/exacttarget/files/deliverables/etmc-2014mobilebehaviorreport.pdf

http://marketingland.com/pew-72-percent-of-smartphone-owners-used-devices-while-shopping-in-stores-32195

http://footwearblog.magiconline.com/content/offering-product-customization-right-your-business

Do We Need to Worry About the Demise of the Brick and Mortar Store?


With many forms of shopping being done completely online, does this mean the end of people physically going to retail stores for what they need and want?

The answer is no, and if you are surprised, I understand!

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There is no doubt that e-commerce and our mobile-savvy world is turning retail into a digital marketplace where the possibilities are endless.  After reading, “E-Commerce Is Not Eating Retail” by Darrell Rigby, I learned many facts that had me saying, “whew!.”  Being a designer of product displays, the fact that there are even talks about brick and mortar stores losing their appeal gives me the shakes.  Brick and mortar stores are the bread and butter of my industry!

Over the past 20 years, e-commerce sales have grown to 6% of total retail sales.  In the future, researchers predict a growth of 18% by 2030, with sales being higher in some categories such as music and lower in others, such as food.

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But according to Rigby, brick and mortar stores still control between 94% and 97% of total retail sales.  In addition, one must also remember that e-commerce and brick and mortar stores work simultaneously.  For example, if I were to go to Walmart for an iPad mini, and they were out of stock, I might go onto my smart phone and order it off their online store and get it next day.  This is where the wires cross.

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Rigby also mentions a great point about strictly e-commerce stores; the information technology, distribution centers, shipping, and returns processing by these companies can actually cost as much as running physical stores.

So, it’s safe to say people still do enjoy the process of perusing through the aisles for the products they are looking for.  People also love to snag a great deal while out shopping.

This means the demand for eye-catching product displays are still high, and we here at Sharn are happy to hear that.

For more information on our products and services, visit our website at http://www.sharndisplays.com

Also, follow us on Facebook & Twitter!

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Source: http://blogs.hbr.org/2014/08/e-commerce-is-not-eating-retail/