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Whenever I talk of loyalty marketing, I almost first hear the public is overwhelmed by the major loyalty programs! If so, why does nearly everyone else do it? Can they not count? For example, I went to a small car parts shop today and was told of their loyalty program. The same happened when I went to a homeware shop. The homeware shop was in a big shopping centre. You might think they do not need a loyalty program as the major loyalty program brings customers in the centre, but they were keen to sign me up too. They even offered a $10 discount to sign up on my first buy.

Loyalty marketing works. That is why retailers use it.

The most successful technique in loyalty marketing is *Birthday Marketing*.

It is so simple to do with our loyalty program. Put in the customer's birthday when entering them into the loyalty program. Although it is much better to use their actual birthday if they do not tell you, make it an anniversary date with their joining date. You can always correct it later if they point it out. Do not worry if it's the wrong date. It will work almost as well anyway. Once done, they enrol on your customer's birthday program. This will allow them to receive special offers and discounts on your products and services on their birthday.

Several years ago, when we did a calculation, we saw about 25% success with our clients in our clients. Here are some figures from  Experian which show a higher figure.

) People buy on birthdays

) Birthdays are all year round

To do Birthday marketing, you must send a simple 'Happy Birthday' message. It will be appreciated and read. Almost everybody reads these emails. To start, here is a simple email to send, which I am sure you can improve to your needs with little effort.

Happy Birthday Email

Happy birthday, <name of customer>

Thank you for being with us. We want to make your birthday as memorable as possible. To celebrate, we're are <something>.

We appreciate everything you do for us and hope you have a wonderful day and year!

Wishing you all the best,

The friendly crew at <your shop>

Set up here.

 

Then towards the end of the month, send a VIP email or letter to all your clients who have birthdays next month with your birthday email.

 

 

Start now!

Tips For Creating A Great Customer Birthday Program

- Try to make the emails personalized with the subscriber's name.

-Send emails a few weeks before their actual birthday and then again about their birthday. Two hits are better then one.

-Use a special offer or a voucher rather than a discount percentage. They are more like a present.

-If you have a website, include a link to a particular page with a few items or offers. If what you offer did not appeal may be something on that page that will appeal.

-Track the results, so you will know how well it goes for you. Our enhanced targeted, data-driven marketing reports let you know.

I doubt you will stop once you start it, as the cost is almost zero and it will produce sales.

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POS SOFTWARE

A few people queried me about my recent post. Well here  are some facts from the Roy Morgan research released yesterday on the End of Financial Year (EOFY) for the Australian Retailers Association.

 


This is the most significant marketing season in the Australian Retail calendar, except for Christmas. For example, Mother's day sales generate about $750 million, while EOFY sales are $8.8 billion, eleven times more.

If the End of the financial year (EOFY) sales do work, why not make one too?

Consider this

1) Those tax refunds are soon coming, and many will want to buy.

2) Many accountants will tell their clients to buy; otherwise, they will pay tax on the money. Why not benefit from the approaching tax time?

3) People are being targeted to buy by advertisers. They are pumped up now to buy, and they will.

4) Many will buy now as they want to take advantage of the government's Instant Asset Write-off.

Customer-focused thinking, attractive display windows, some signs, and lifestyle merchandising are four good ways to boost your End-of-year sales.

What can be sold, just about anything? People now want old and new stock. 

Do something or be left behind.

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The countdown to the end of the financial year (EOFY) is on. Now is the time to prepare for your EOFY sale. Ok, there's nothing at all original about this idea. You can look at any large retailer. These people have heaps of experience in this matter. They do it, and if it works for them, why not you?

EOFY is an extraordinary method to move goods. Many people are looking to buy now before the financial year closes to claim in this financial year.

Consider what an EOFY sale can offer your business.

So make a marketing plan for the next few weeks. It really does not need much organising. It would be best to think of some publicising, which often does not need to be more than a few decent signs. Now look around your shop for some loss leaders to fuel the sale. If you do not know where to begin, do this; it will give a few ideas to consider in seconds.

Go to register reports > stock titled "Old Stock on hand by Date last received"

This will gives you a listing of your stock based on when you received it. Unfortunately, this stock is rarely doing much good, and it costs you to hold it.

Here are a few thoughts for you to prepare for your EOFY deal.

1) What about making some of this into a bundle by putting some of these with something that does sell.

2) Make a bargain bin.

3) Collect some business products together

Now put them out and put a sign marking them in your shop.

Let me know how it goes. I doubt you will be sorry if you try, but I am sure you will be sorry if you do not try it!

Ok, so I’m going to be straight to the point with our EOFY offer from POS Solutions. We have excess stock that we too would much prefer to sell than count. If you need some technology, why not stock up while we are keen to move it.

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POS SOFTWARE

Make and sell hamper packs.

A basket chock-full of goodies is a popular method of moving stock that does not sell well. It is versatile. They can be made to be appropriate for almost every occasion. In our family shop, when I was a kid, we used them a lot to sell. So I am quite experienced in them.

Remember a hamper is a good sale in the shop.

Here are some tips.

) Research hampers that sell near you. Check out the price points, see what they are composed of, see what they look like and how they are put together.

) Now you need a theme.

Consider an individual searching for a hamper in your shop. For example, Mother's Day has recently been. That would have been your theme. What would they want to find in a Mother's Day hamper from your shop? Get imaginative! Check out last year's selling reports for the same time as last year. We have a very good report top-selling report you can use.

) Look through the shop for items you want to move that are not selling well. Select a few that are appropriate. Now you need some articles that do sell. These help move stock that does not sell. Your selling reports can help you here. If there is a community festival, often your suppliers will help with stock to move. They usually have the same problem, too, the desire to move inventory that is moving slow.

You need to select a large item as a visual focal point for your hamper. Now you will need to arrange the smaller things around this big one. Most hampers look like a triangle. The most desirable items have to be seen.

) Value

You need to set a budget. What will your customer spend?

When making your hamper, make sure that if a customer adds up the total items in the hamper pack, it is less than the total price. This is where the slow-moving stock report can help.

Research indicates that customers want simple rather than complex and if it starts to get too complicated that many people tend not to choose, so giving you a no sale rather than a purchase.

Now with this in mind, consider if you make a hamper or pack name.

In stock pricing, you will find this under hamper packs. See the green arrow.

Hamper description

Naming your hamper or pack is a good idea (see red square) as long as you make the name understandable and straightforward. Say you are in office stationery why make a name like "The flying carpet pack". Besides this name telling your customer nothing and so confusing them with something meaningless, it makes it complicated.

Make it simple with something they can identify with, eg "Secondary Student Plan", "Home Office Plan" or "Kindergarten Pack."

Another idea that works very well is to make a "Starter Pack", "Small Pack", "Medium Pack" and a "Large Economy Pack". 

Hamper packs are a great way to upsell. 

They can be used for anything, lotto, pet foods, magazines, services, etc.

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The best and most used selling method in retail - cross-selling. Cross-selling is when someone comes to buy a product, and you sell them that product and something else. The something else is the cross-sell. Often the profit on it is more than the initial product. Strategically, this is a fundamental method in modern retail, and it needs to be done well.

What you need to do, is place a product in a consumer's mind looking for another item to make it work. The more things you can place, the better, but do not go overboard. So what you need is to find out what products that sell well with the items the consumer seeks, which is easy to do with your Point of Sale software.

Let us start.

Go here to the Sales reports "Category Companion Sales by Period."

 

It will then give you this screen that lets you select your categories.

 

 

Now go through your top-selling categories. Check to see what items sell well with these categories. Then make sure that these items are noticeable to the buyers of the categories. This, you will find, is a great way to pick up more sales.

By incorporating this into your management processes, you increase your total sales.

 

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​​Why not add accessibility to your Google Map Listing?

Doing a net search, I found over a million Australians use wheelchairs. About 1.5 million Australians use prams and strollers. Many people have trouble walking (I could not get estimates, but that includes people with walking sticks, etc.).

) Have you ever wondered why there are so many more people with prams and wheelchairs in shopping centres?

) Do you wonder why?

) Do you see why it is important to them?

Ballpark there are at least 3 million Australians now that have accessibility problems, over 15% of shoppers.

Many people now check accessibility in Google business listings when searching for businesses like yours.

Okay, there is a simple fix: tell them that you have wheelchair access in Google. Go to your Google My Business listing and update these options in Attributes.

Save and when these people search for you, they will see that you have accessibility for them.

If you want to know more, watch this video here.

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Physical stores anticipate making a significant rebound this year for Easter now that COVID is over. Overall, the industry is looking at about an 8% expansion. I expect more as restaurants will be down compared to 2019, so gifts should be up on 2019 figures.

 Based on Google Trends, we can see that public interest is growing. So the interest is there.

Since it is so late, people are looking for convenience. You want to make it quick and straightforward for your customers to find their gifts. Best to make a showcase with your Easter products with signage to lead them to the display.

If you have not done it yet, it is quick and easy to do this with your retail POS system.

Go to Register reports.

Now pick "Top N Stock Sales for a Given Period."

 

In the form, put in a few days before April 4, 2021, and a few days after. That will give you a list of what sold last year.

Now put in the year before COVID-19 hit, a few days before April 21, 2019, and a few days after. That will give you a list of what sold that year.

This year it will be a mix of these two dates. 

Now, these are the items that worked for you then. They will should work for you again this year.

Easter is an excellent shopping day in retail. Although it has only a short holiday season, sales can be impressive.

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I talked to a liquor retailer about their "Click and Collect" service vs. in-store sales. I was stunned when told that customers using their shop online in their basket with Click and Collect spent 38% more than when they were in the store. When I questioned it, as surely the customers would spend less because there are no impulse sales with Click and Collect. They informed me that they were tracking the information through the shop rewards card. People using Click and Collect purchased more than those that came into the shop. Clearly, they are using their customer CRM in their system.

See the importance of customer information here! Any rewards program you have should collect names so you can track these details too.

Click and Collect is attractive to the Australian consumer. 

1) Cost. With Click and Collect, they can get free delivery without paying inflated prices for so-called free delivery.


2) Speed, Click and Collect. They can often pick it up hours as opposed to days for delivery.


3) Convenience. They can drive-in on the way home or at lunch breaks.


4) It is easier for the Australian consumer to carry.

Some pluses for the retailers

1) An employee picks an order eight times faster than a customer.

2) The retailer does not need a checkout.

3) No theft. Customers can't steal if they aren't coming into the shop.

4) The retailer can select items that expire sooner.

Currently, about 10% of Australian retail sales are Click and Collect.

If you have a website, I suggest you introduce this service.

Our system was the first in our market space to offer such a service so why not use it?

 

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Prepare for mother's day as it's coming. This is the third-largest retail event following Christmas and the back-to-school season. So it's worthwhile preparing.

Based on previous years, the retail industry is looking at an increase in overall sales this year with an average spend of about $80.  

For Mother's Day (25%), a considerable percentage of shoppers state that convenience is crucial when picking out a Mother's Day gift. They do not know what you buy, and they want to do it quickly. So make it easy for your shoppers to find their gifts. Consider creating a display such as this that features your Mother's Day merchandise with signage to lead shoppers to this exhibit. You want to make it easy for your customers to grab and go.

If you are unsure of what will work in your shop on Mother's Day or to get some ideas.

Go to Register reports.

 

Now pick "Top N Stock Sales for a Given Period."

 

 In the form, put in the week before May 9, 2021, and check it out. That will give you what worked last year.

Now put in the year before COVID-19 hit on May 12, 2019, and see that report. 

This year will be a mix of these two dates. As people expect restaurants and special outings to be down compared to 2019, so flowers and gifts should be up on 2019 figures. 

Now, these are the items that worked for you then. They will probably work for you again this year.

Mother's Day is an excellent shopping day in retail. Although it is a limited-time shopping festival with a short season, it can considerably impact your shop if correctly done.

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Ever wonder why many majors hit you first with the dearer item when you come into the shop?

Why in a car yard are the dearest cars in front not the best selling cars?

This is the "anchoring effect." You should consider this for your shop. When hit with a lot of new stuff, it works as people tend to grab the information they get first as the basis for making decisions.

Here is an example of how it works.

Imagine you have three items on sale.

1) $30 item

2) $40 item

3) $50 item

If you see the $30 item first, your immediate thought is that the $40 and $50 things are dearer.

But, if you see the $50 item first, your immediate thought is that the other items are cheaper.

Studies have shown that having the $50 item on display first makes people more likely to buy it, as the $30 and $40 items seem reasonable. Interestingly, sales of $40 increased dramatically. It is claimed that it is worth having the $50 just because of this, even if it does not sell. 

It is something worth thinking about.

Here is a video of how it works in practice and what you should do about it.

This is where you have to be very careful looking at your sales reports.

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