To many high-street retailers, Amazon seems like an unstoppable beast that is impossible to compete with. The giant that ate retailers for breakfast has overtaken one of it’s biggest competitors, Wal-Mart as the second largest seller of consumer electronics in he United States.
Smaller retailers will be forgiven for thinking that it’s impossible to compete with these giants. But we live in a digital world. A world that provides the opportunity for us to outwit our opponents through clever strategy and marketing.
Middle market companies like TK Maxx and H&M have been growing from strength to strength, proving that although they might not be able to compete with the biggest players on price and inventory, they can still become wildly profitable by taking advantage of the power of data and getting creative.
Here are some ways middle market companies can stay relevant in the face of the Amazon goliath.
Identify Missed Opportunities
A few months ago, the home improvement retailer, Lowe’s, recognised it was literally losing billions of dollars per year because consumers were feeling so overwhelmed when planning their home remodelling that they gave up without even making a purchase.
This is when Lowe’s decided to create an in-store virtual-reality system that allowed customers to design their remodel using VR tools. This enabled the customers to see their new house like they were standing in it.
A little creativity can go a heck of a long way. Discovering sticking points with your products and services and adapting your strategy allows you to optimise the results you generate.
As we swiftly move through this digital world, middle market businesses need to understand that the shopping experience as well as the products they offer is never going to be finished. Modern trends are always evolving and there is now requirement for creating unique experiences for customers.
Whole Foods is a company that has often been criticised for overblown pricing. So they decided to try something different. They went into a millennial-heavy part of Los Angeles and created a store that changed the company reputation as a super high priced grocery shop. They created a custom environment for their audience, including Ipads for ordering to go, a dig hitching station at the front, organic fruit and responsibly harvested seafood. This was all delivered in a much more affordable package compared to the usual Whole Foods offerings.
In this case, Whole Foods took the chance of changing their business model as an experiment to show that they understood budget concerns and the desire to have a great shopping experience.
Take Advantage Of Beacons
Because are due to drive $44 billion in sales in 2017, according to the most recent predictions. Although some of the first users of beacon technology haven’t had the best reaction from consumers, with some people feeling that they were straight up “creepy” the opportunity for retailers to create great experiences shouldn’t be underestimated.
If it is used to spam people with faceless promotions then of-course it won’t be effective. No better than a poorly targeted ad or promotion. However, if they deliver personalised value based on consumers previous shopping habits then it drive revenue that would have otherwise been lost.