Best Practices for Effective In-Store Communication

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Based on a publication from Amy Bakos in Retail Info Systems, Best Practices for Effective In-Store Communication.

Prácticas recomendadas para una comunicación eficaz en la tienda

Efficient in-store communication is essential for retail success. With current labor shortages threatening in-store efficiencies, every staff member is critically important to the customer experience.

Whether retailers strive to create a safe and efficient experience for shoppers or improve customer retention rates and average basket sizes, efficient in-store communication is essential for success. With current labor shortages threatening in-store efficiencies, every staff member is critically important to the customer experience. And ensuring that each interaction runs smoothly is much easier with a fully connected in-store team. By providing key store associates with the right technology, retailers can improve their bottom line.


Leveraging tech to improve associate engagement

According to a recent study conducted by Gallup, nearly 85% of employees worldwide say they are not actively engaged at work. Employee engagement is a problem nearly every company struggles with, but it doesn’t have to be.

Frontline workers are the outward face of the company — the brand. They interact with the customer daily, making it critical that they remain engaged and prepared to deliver a superb customer experience. Empower your employees with the tools to transform your retail operation.

Equip each employee with voice technology that allows them to access real-time information regarding daily store operations, inventory, product expertise, scheduling, and more. Send them daily pep talks or words of encouragement to keep them motivated. For too long, the employee experience has been overlooked by many businesses. Invest in your frontline, and they will invest in you!

Investing in unified solutions

Shoppers today have embraced an omnichannel buying strategy. Some browse the store and then buy online, while others “window shop” on social media before visiting a brick-and-mortar location to make the purchase. As customer buying behaviors and expectations change, disconnected teams struggle to keep up with customer needs, risking the loss of revenues or loyalty.

It is no surprise that in 2019, 80% of the U.S. workforce reported an increase in stress levels due to ineffective company communication. Technology has advanced past the need for walkie-talkies, which lead to frustrations with crowded radio channels and muffled or lost communication. The responsibilities of the daily retail worker have evolved to include BOPIS, curbside pickup, and much more. Associates require a modern solution for a modern problem.

Consider investing in a mobile communication platform that can enable consistent, clear messaging to all levels of your team. With a unified workforce, your entire workforce’s productivity levels will rise, and so will your profits.

Innovating for the future of retail

Retail is changing fast, and with the new challenges presented by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, stores have been pushed to innovate in new and creative ways to meet the ever-changing expectations of their customers. Luckily, investments in new technologies present an opportunity for retailers to completely transform store operations and the customer experience in their stores.

Curbside pickup and buy-online-pickup-in-store (BOPIS) sales have surged during the last year. As businesses quickly threw together curbside options for their customers, many realized that merely increasing their staff was not a practical solution for streamlining these processes. The most successful retailers recognized that this problem requires a more innovative approach.

For example, after investing in voice technology for its store associates, a large rural lifestyle retailer saw approximately 75% of its online sales come via BOPIS orders last year. In-store efficiency improved as well, resulting in over 90% of online orders being picked up in less than an hour.

Creating a connected enterprise

The labor shortage is challenging the entire workforce, but retailers can make the most of their existing workforce through actions and innovations that drive connection. In short, connection creates culture, and a truly connected workforce can transform your retail operation.

This article was originally published in Retail Info Systems

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