Controlling more than $600 billion in collective spending power, millennial customers are a demographic your brick-and-mortar business simply can’t afford to ignore.
While you may think targeting millennial customers for your brick-and-mortar business will be difficult due to the popularity of online shopping, you could be misjudging the current state of retail shopping. According to research by behavioral marketing firm SmarterHQ, a whopping “50% of millennials not only go to physical stores, they prefer going to them as a primary means of shopping.”
Contrary to popular belief, millennials aren’t exclusively buying online. They still enjoy going out and shopping in brick-and-mortar locations, and your retail business needs to capitalize on it. “By 2020, millennials will have a collective spending power of more than $1.4 trillion,” accordingly to The Motley Fool. You need to know how to attract and excite this powerful and large demographic of shoppers.
Here are five ways you can set up your brick-and-mortar store to please and impress millennial shoppers.
1. Offer a unique experience.
Millennials wield a lot of spending power, and they use their money not to just buy things, but to also buy experiences. An Eventbrite survey on millennials found that “66% of the study’s respondents said they felt more fulfilled by live experiences than purchasing an item of the same value.”
Now more than ever before customers want experiences. Tap into this millennials craving by creating in-person unique, informative, fun, and novel experiences in your store.
- Build “Instagramable” elements in your business. Set up a unique photo opp to encourage in-store shoppers to capture the moment and share it through their social media accounts.
- Host VIP shopping events. VIP events make your top shoppers feel special and also give them a fun, exclusive experience.
- Lead in-store trainings or workshops. In-store events are a great way to lure in customers who may be looking for something to do and end up making a purchase before they leave.
2. Connect the in-store experience to the online experience.
Millennials are hyper-connected to their phones. In fact, Americans in general almost always have their phone with them and repeatedly check their devices. A study by Asurion found that “the average person struggles to go little more than 10 minutes without checking their phone.”
This stats means that even while they are out experiencing brands in real life, people are also still connected to their digital worlds, especially when they are shopping. According to a SessionM study, “more than 90% of consumers use their smartphones while shopping in retail stores.”
Capitalize on this habit by making your in-store experience tie into your brand’s online experience.
- Use omni-channel marketing. Make sure that all of your branded touchpoints, both in-store and online, are cohesive and connected.
- Give in-store customers free WiFi. Customers frequently use their smartphones to check prices and cross-reference products while shopping. Give them free customer WiFi so they can more easily search online while in your store.
- Feature social media platforms in your store. Set up digital screens with streams of your social media feeds to bring the digital experience inside of your store.
3. Personalize customer experiences.
Because millennial customers are used to having many of their branded experiences online, they have come to expect something -- personalization. They are accustomed to having their experiences customized to match their unique interests.
If you want to please millennial customers, aim to make their in-store experience feel as personalized as their online experience. Also, use their presence in your store as an opportunity to enhance the personalization of their digital experience.
- Collect customer contact information when shoppers are in your store. By collecting customer data, you can later send digital remarketing campaigns through email or text marketing.
- Use WiFi marketing to send push notifications based on in-store customer habits. When customer sign into your in-store WiFi, send them offers and coupons based on their in-store shopping habits.
- Use geofences to customize in-store digital content for your shoppers. Through WiFi marketing, set up geofences that change in-store content based on where customers are in your location.
4. Show off your company’s social responsibility.
When millennial customers choose who gets their business, they often consider a factor that has nothing to do with products or services. They choose brands based on the good they are doing in the world and their communities.
“More than nine-in-10 millennials would switch brands to one associated with a cause,” according to a Cone Communications Millennial CSR Study.
Feature your philanthropic efforts on prominent digital signage in your location. And, make sure your customers know about the initiatives your company has to spread good in both your nearby community and across the world.
5. Be fast, efficient, and forward-thinking.
Growing up in the “on-demand” world, millennials have come to expect that they can get what they want as soon as they want it. They don’t like to wait, and they have little patience for old ways of doing things. A retail shopper survey by TotalRetail found that 88% of millennials cited easy checkout as what’s important to their in-store experience.
Cater to the millennial’s sense of urgency and desire for ease by setting up your brick-and-mortar business to make it easy for them to shop and buy.
- Set up self-serve kiosks. Create ways for customers to expedite their purchase and check-out on their own.
- Offer online shopping with in-store pick-up. Further connect the in-store and online shopping experience by providing online ordering with immediate in-store pick-up.
- Use mobile devices for customer service. Provide a text number and let in-store shoppers text a number to receive assistance from an in-store associate.
Starting impressing millennial customers today.
If you want to grow your brick-and-mortar business and thrive in the current and future economy, you need to know how to connect with millennial customers who hold more than $600 billion in spending power.
For help with implementing these strategies and more ideas on how to use in-store marketing campaigns and tools to connect with millennial shoppers, contact Spectrio today.
Get additional advice for your retail store by downloading our free Retail Customer Experience Audit that walks you through dozens of factors that can help you uplift and elevate your in-store environment.