The vast majority of Americans are no longer first-time mobile phone buyers. In fact, as of 2016, 95% of Americans owned a cellphone of some kind, and 77% owned a smartphone. What’s more, one in ten American adults are “smartphone-only”, meaning they use their mobile in place of a traditional landline service.
What does all this mean for wireless retailers? North American consumers are no longer in the dark about the kinds of products they’re after and are more likely to come into a store with an exact product in mind. As a result, wireless retailers need to find ways to appeal to their customers and strategically boost sales by making customized offers for accessories and add-ons that pair well with their desired item. As a wireless retailer, you’re not only selling phone plans and headsets—you’re selling highly-personalized experiences.
In the age of omnichannel retail, we have unprecedented amounts of data on our customers. The trick is to use this data strategically to give your customers unparalleled levels of service across all touchpoints.
Appeal to customers’ shopping habits
Mobile is no longer purely a nice-to-have touchpoint. Instead, it’s at the core of customer engagement in omnichannel retail. As noted in PwC’s Total Retail 2017 survey, 35% of consumers will use smartphones as their main purchasing tool this year. Retailers need to take advantage of consumers' changing shopping habits to send customized promotions and offers that will promote purchases.
For example, sending mobile users text messages that link to ongoing promotions or inform them of sales at nearby wireless retailer locations can help increase conversions. These marketing tactics can be customized based on highly personal data, such as the time of day the shopper is most likely to complete a purchase, the items they are most likely to purpose, and the likelihood that they will buy on mobile instead of at a brick-and-mortar location.
Create a memorable in-store experience
When RetailWire surveyed over 375 industry execs and managers, 49% acknowledged that it’s extremely important to invest in the in-store experience for omnichannel success—but in most cases, in-store customization efforts were only in the planning stage. In order to differentiate from your competitors, you should seek to customize the retail experience not only across mobile and e-commerce platforms, but also at your store locations.
Visual merchandising tools can help retailers provide a more customized experience. Digital signage, for example, can allow customers the freedom to scroll through products on their own while giving retailers the flexibility to adjust brand messaging based on the products the customer is interested in and the time of day. For example, if a customer was interested in hands-free headsets, touchscreens could allow them to virtually try on models in real-time while showing relevant promotions on screen. By catering to each customer’s needs, wireless retailers can help create an efficient and cohesive in-store experience that helps drive the customer towards purchase.
Use a sophisticated CRM
In order to personalize the customer lifecycle across online and offline channels, from awareness to post-sales, wireless retailers can benefit from sophisticated software that allows an end-to end view of their consumers. By understanding the consumer’s shopping habits and preferences, wireless retailers can make more pointed offers that meet their needs.
Connecting your CRM with your POS and e-commerce platform is the first step to providing a consistent customer experience across all channels. With systems in place to collect data on your customers at every touchpoint, you can ensure that sales and marketing teams are equipped to best promote specific phone plans, data packages, and accessories to their customers. Data from your systems must be accessible across the organization to ensure that consumers get the same level of personalized service at each stage of the customer journey.
Customizing the wireless retail experience will set you apart from your competitors. By appealing to customers’ habits and preferences, you can shift the focus from transactions to relationships and build customer loyalty that will benefit your bottom line for years to come.
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