7 ways to drive foot traffic to your retail store

7 ways to drive foot traffic to your retail store

Posted by Arrowhead Sign Company on Jun 25th 2018

If you own a brick-and-mortar storefront, increasing foot traffic to your store should be your #1 concern. With these 7 tips, you can do just that. 

In 2017, Deloitte conducted a holiday retail survey asking consumers where they would be doing their holiday spending. The results?

For the first time, e-commerce businesses bumped physical stores out of the top spot for holiday shoppers to find the perfect gifts. It wasn't a surprising statistic. The popularity of cyber shopping has grown steadily with each passing year.

Yet the decline leaves businesses asking, "How do we get people back into our stores?"

With more consumers shopping online than ever before, brick and mortar retailers have to think innovatively if they want more foot traffic. Below you'll find a few ideas to help kickstart your objective.

7 Tips on Driving Foot Traffic into Stores

A prime location in an outdoor shopping mall or strip center isn't enough these days to draw attention. Think of ways to pique your target customer's curiosity.

Physical stores still have a lot to offer that e-commerce alternatives can't. The key is to optimize on these unique advantages!

1. Dress Up Your Curb Appeal

First impressions matter. These 3 words are a reality whether you're a professional walking into a meeting or a physical location trying to entice customers to step through your door.

Dress to impress by making your curb appeal irresistible. Polish up any dirty windows or fading paint jobs and optimize on any opportunities for window displays.

Think about your target demographic and play to their interests.

Try to go the extra mile, too. Think of additional decorations, signage, or opportunities to engage your customer base before they step into your store. This may include free samples, a raffle, or sidewalk event.

2. Get Creative and Bold with Your Signage

There is everyday signage, and then there is clever signage. Which category does your store fall under?

Most locations have some form of advertising posted up in their windows, by the door, or even on the sidewalk. It's so common that many potential customers walking by don't even notice.

Make your message stand out by presenting it in a new way. A changeable A-Frame sign outside your doorway with a trivia question is a great way to inspire individuals to walk through the door.

Give a prize to individuals who can answer it right, whether its a discount on certain products or a freebie. Once you have them inside your store, you have an opportunity to sell them on your products.

3. Utilize Social Media Content and Advertising for Exposure

Social media platforms are an excellent and cost-effective way to spread the word about your business and in-store incentives. With its custom audience targeting algorithms, you can hone in on your best demographic and geolocation.

Make your posts friendly and engaging while creating a distinct call-to-action. You can feature new or on sale products, promote events, and hold online contests and giveaways.

Keep in mind organic reach has heavily dwindled over the years, especially on Facebook where it averages 2 to 4 percent of your audience. In order to gain an effective reach, use an advertising budget to boost your posts or implement ads.

4. Draw Customers In with Special Deals

E-commerce platforms are robbing retail stores of business through the advantage of lower prices and convenience. Fight back with special deals customers can only receive in-store.

This gives buyers a reason to leave the house and come to your store. Beyond that, it also inspires foot traffic from potential customers simply walking by.

The great thing about locations within a plaza or mall is that you have the opportunity to entice customers who came for an item at another store but caught sight of something of interest while passing by yours.

5. Make Sure Your Employees are Active and Engaging

A great deal is enough to inspire people to walk through your door. However, great employees are the ones who will close the sale.

Make sure you hire and train employees to create an inviting environment for your customers. Crackdown on idle employees who chat amongst themselves instead of engaging new visitors.

Greet every customer who enters your store. Engage with them and ensure they know you're available and happy to answer any questions or assist with their purchases.

Customers remember excellent service and friendly staff and often become repeat buyers because of it.

6. Offer Complimentary Items as a Reason to Come Inside

Word of free stuff travels fast. Build your foot traffic with complementary offerings.

It doesn't have to be anything extravagant. Small servings of coffee, water, donuts, or other snacks are enough to draw people in. This is especially true in indoor and outdoor malls where people are actively walking around.

Foot traffic that is drawn into your store for these freebies often browse as they enjoy them, which gives you the perfect opportunity to turn their visit into a sale.

7. Create Unique Events to Encourage More Store Traffic

These days, you'll be hardpressed not to find a reason to throw an event. Between the numerous holidays created for social media to local celebrations and officially recognized holidays, you can make up something new every week if you so desired.

Don't be shy about creating an event for your store location. Take the time to plan ahead, including advertising, incentives, and deciding how your event will be executed. Make it an appealing affair that people want to attend.

If you make events a common affair, your customer base will start to anticipate them. Use social media and traditional media outlets to promote the event ahead of time.

Consider partnering with other vendors, too, such as food trucks or even other stores within your mall or plaza. By partnering with other businesses, you increase exposure and the odds of attracting new business.

Just avoid partnering with competitors. Find businesses whose offerings fit the event without meeting the same desires or needs as your own product or service.

Let Us Help You Increase Your Store Traffic

Need signage for your business in order to increase your in-store foot traffic? We have you covered for everything from basic signs and banners to trade show displays and flags that will draw the eyes of passersby.

To get started, fill out our form with a bit of information regarding your needs, then ask us for a quote. We'll whip up a custom solution just for you.