Retail future outlook in a Covid 19 World!! -27th APRIL – 1ST MAY 2020 | Virtual
Revising ways of serving the customer
Anupam Bansal, MD, Liberty Shoes hinted at the fact that post-lockdown with hygiene and government guidelines on social distancing in place, brands like theirs have to think of ways to cut down on crowding at the stores, yet retain customers. In order to do that they are looking at scheduling appointments for customers before they visit the store, planning to localize deliveries, and are strategizing to offer an enhanced experience to each customer marrying the offline and online space.
Changing dimensions of offerings
Inder Dev Singh Musafir, Director, M&B Footwear at this point mentioned that branded footwear and accessories brands have largely always followed the concept of sanitization and hygiene. Maybe now, it gets more stringent. However, the impetus of following hygiene norms falls more on the unbranded sector and they have to mend their policies to become more customer-friendly. He also harped on cross-brand promotions and rewards as customer engagement must-dos in the post-COVID world.
Engaging the customers
Sat Vijayaraghavan, Founder and CEO, CASA. Retail AI enlightened us on the facts of customer engagement and mentioned that brands need to engage and create awareness with their audience as a part of their short-term marketing plans. On the other hand, he also highlighted that as per trends noted through history, the market will grow after the lockdown is over. From a long-term strategic point of view, he mentioned that brands need to drive optimization at the store level and make it a constant. Tech to help sales in reducing manpower and lowering traffic in stores, he further mentioned.
Food delivery will face a big revival
Ritesh Sinha, COO, Biriyani By Kilo mentioned that as per as restaurant business is concerned, the idea of health will be reviewed by a customer with more stringent attention. So, digitally activating the supply chain and taking the support of own delivery mechanisms will become more of a trustworthy option as compared to getting food delivered through third-party channels. Hygiene is key to winning customers post-lockdown and even during the current time, so keeping the QC measures in-house will always help us know that we are abiding by it to a T.
Engaging with a minimum marketing budget
Navin Joshua, Founder/Director, Green Honchos highlighted on the importance of sensible content when it comes to customer experience. He described how bringing the stores to every home through the digital and tech help will help brands gain customer confidence. Omnichannel was already a part and parcel of people’s lives as far as most brands are concerned. However, now it is more important to take the stores to your customer’s home and tech can play a collaborative role with offline and digital to drive navigate this change in the days to come.
Offline retail is here to stay
Kapil Pathare, Director, VIP Clothing Ltd on a positive note mentioned that once the lockdown is lifted, people will go out for retail therapy and they will want to explore the life they have been missing all this while. He added that the technology shift has already happened, but now technology has to come in to become useful for the audience. Brands should bring in technology that the consumer or users find easy to use. It should be pointed and audience-specific.
Personalization of customer-experience is key
Rohin Mittal, Director, Adyogi harped on the fact that when a brand gives back to back good customer experiences then they can make someone their long-term customer. To take the discussion further on, he mentioned that the brands need to pay attention to customers of all age-groups individually and treat them as separate just like how financial institutions are more and more customizing their offering to make the same customer-centric. Customer experiences that are individually mapped to the age or requirement of a customer goes a long way in gaining that customer’s trust. So, that should be the primary attention point at this moment more than anything else.