WHAT ARE THE LATEST NATIONAL RESTRICTIONS ON THE RETAIL INDUSTRY?
On Saturday 31 October, Boris Johnson announced that England will enter a second national lockdown set to last for four-weeks starting Thursday 5 November to prevent further spread of the coronavirus after recent acceleration of cases in the UK.
On the cusp of its busiest period, the restrictions that will see all non essential retailers close their doors to shoppers will be disappointing to many brands that were hoping for a strong peak season. Not only will closures prevent customers from shopping in-store during the busiest period, but non essential stores will also miss out on this year’s Black Friday, planned to take place on the 29th of November.
Here is a list of all of non essential shops that will close on Thursday 5th November:
- Department stores
- Apparel stores
- Beauty stores
- Electronics/tech stores
- Toy shops
- Furniture stores
- Beauty shops
- Jewellery shops
WHAT SHOULD RETAILERS DO?
Retailers now have to focus on reaching their customers, CEO & Co-Founder Cathy McCabe states:
‘As we embark on further lockdowns we all face an abnormal peak season and it is abundantly clear that we will not return to any kind of normal in the next six months.
Retail has become digital and retailers need to find ways to leverage the dedication and passion of their in-store teams to serve online customers whilst the doors to stores are closed.
Customers will seek out those brands that offer speed, convenience and elevated services. There is no time to ponder or procrastinate. It is those brands who have and can act quickly who will survive.
Be more personal.
Leverage your store teams.
Bring your store to life online.’
HOW DO RETAILERS REACH THEIR CUSTOMERS?
In response to the pandemic and the first national lockdown launched our ‘Taking Care of Retail’ series. We wanted to offer practical guidance based on the new era of retail; store closers required retailers to pivot quickly to serve customers virtually and support their ecommerce business (if they had one).
In the first report we published customer quotes from our customer user group sessions, partnered closely with industry experts, provided unique operational insight stores operating virtually and we included a comprehensive view of the new set of feature solutions we would be fastracking from our product roadmap designed to help retailers reach customers in the ‘new normal. These features were Appointment Booker, Video Chat, Virtual Payments and Personalised Microsites.
Read the first Taking Care of Retail report here.
Once stores reopened, the new restrictive measures meant that physical stores had to operate in new ways, we responded with the second release of the Taking Care of Retail series ‘Welcome Back Stores’. This guide offered 5 Tactics to enhance customer experience under new measures.
Read Welcome Back Stores
In the third report of the series, Cathy McCabe writes a reflection on the first half of the year, what to expect in the crucial fourth quarter as well as outlining strategies to sell to customers whether they are online or instore. In the report Cathy states that despite the uncertainty of what is to come, online sales we’re still rising. The message was clear that ‘Personal is Still Powerful’ and retailers must embrace the ‘Rise of Virtual Commerce’. We also introduced Live Chat and Queue Management to the Essential Brand Toolkit.
WHY SHOULD RETAILERS USE OUR CONNECTED RETAIL SOLUTIONS?
Next in our series: Taking Care of Retail: The Results
In this report we’ll publish insights from the front line, a formula for success for any brand and practical advice to reach customers now.
If you want to act fast schedule a demo for your brand to:
- Get up and running within in 2 weeks
- Drive customer loyalty through personal outreach
- 360° customer data capture that is GDPR compliant
Book a demo or reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org