Yep.  2017 is going to suck.

OK, not for everyone.  But, certainly for a lot of retailers.  Why?

Well, far too many brick and mortar retailers still haven’t recognized that the in-store experience matters more now than ever before.   It’s too easy for consumers to sit on the couch and with a couple of clicks have whatever they want delivered to their doorstep.   Make no mistake … most consumers would rather go to the store (after all, humans crave social interaction).  But they’re not about to fight traffic, struggle for parking and then be confronted with a mundane shopping experience.

It doesn’t have to be this way.  And, it doesn’t have to cost a fortune.  True, you can spend millions on digital show-stopping showrooms.  But, the most important part of the entire in-store experience is the staff on the floor.   Getting better performance from your staff isn’t going to break the bank.  In fact, it just might save your bank account!

Retailers that have improved the staff experience through better staff management practices like fair scheduling and improved pay rates have reaped the rewards.  Those that have invested in proper onboarding procedures have reduced turnover and as a result strengthened the brand on the floor with more experienced staff.  And, retailers that have trained their sales staff to sell (shocking idea, eh?) and their store managers how to manage (brilliant thinking!) have watched sales and productivity grow exponentially.

Having been in the business for almost 30 years now, I can tell you that more retailers than ever before really do ‘get it’ when it comes to the importance of the in-store shopping experience.  But, I can also tell you that too many still pay lip service to improving it.

2017 doesn’t have to suck.  Just get serious about improving the performance of your staff and your in-store shopping experience.

Kevin Graff is the main guy behind all things Graff Retail. A renowned retail expert, Kevin is recognized in the retail industry as a speaker, author and expert trainer. Kevin's main passion is to help retailers drive staff performance.

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