In recent months, your business has probably not looked like it used to, and the protracted pandemic has left its mark on most people. Slowly but surely, however, we are beginning to see the light in the tunnel and both new bridal couples and those who have had to wait are now fully planning and will be in great need of your expertise and your products.
There is still a need for distance
Although many have now had time to get their vaccine, the need to keep their distance will still be there for many of your customers. Therefore, plan how many customers you will have the opportunity to have in the store at the same time. In order to be able to meet the need without having too many customers in the store at the same time, perhaps there is a need to review the store’s opening hours? Longer opening hours mean that you have the opportunity to receive more customers but still keep your distance and any restrictions.
Be prepared for changes
The customers you have had in the store in the last 12 months who have considered, but not yet bought, are probably now ready to make a decision. But a lot may have changed in a few months and their original idea and wishes may have changed. It is important to be prepared to have an open mind and be flexible to customers new desires.
Prepare for the storm
As so many weddings have been postponed, there may be a (positive) storming of the store. After a tough time, a high pressure from customers is welcome, but if you and your staff are not prepared, it can also cause some problems. So prepare for a possible storm and make sure you have both supply and manpower under control.
What does your team look like? Have you reduced your staff and perhaps worked together much during the pandemic? To be able to function together as a team again, it can be very positive for the staff to gather around team building activities and planning meetings for the coming season. Does everyone understand what is expected and what is expected of them?
A strong profile
Make sure you profile your business and that there are clear guidelines. It is important to set up guidelines for both in-store treatment for your staff and a graphic profile for how the business should profile itself externally. What does the marketing look like? Is there a plan for the future? If not, sit down with the staff and create a common thread for everything that is communicated to the outside world.
Get the store ready for a fresh start
Let the customers who visit you know even before the visit that they can expect the latest from you. Make sure you can offer at least something from the suppliers’ latest collection and keep the store stylish and inviting. Maybe it’s time to re-decorate the shop windows, sort among the hangers or redo the test rooms? See the new year as a fresh start where you and your staff get the opportunity to present the store again and do it nicely!
Think outside the box
Even though we all hope that customers will now storm into the store, there may still be a need to think outside the box. Maybe you can arrange mini-events for small groups? Or offer home visits to those who do not have the opportunity to get to the store due to possible fears or restrictions. Think outside the box and enable sales on different levels!