How Does a Store Survive in Competition with Large Retail?
The market is saturated with shops that compete mainly on price grounds. Everyone sells, practically, the same goods to the same customers. Who has a better chance of surviving in these conditions? Obviously, those who have a large margin of safety, that is, have a good resource base, in our case – these are federal and regional networks.
So what should everyone else do? During my work, I have formulated several principles on which my approach to developing anti-crisis measures is based:
1. To date, the problem is not the lack of information, but its oversupply. There are hundreds of models of efficiency improvement, marketing strategies and sales tools, and each method has both supporters and opponents, many theories differ only by name and duplicate each other, and some are the consequence and continuation of each other and are not understandable without tracking them in the dynamics.
We read the books of Japanese generals and Chinese sages, immerse ourselves in facilitation and master Buddhist techniques, and draw inspiration from the biographies of American millionaires.
We are still studying the 4P model, but in one of the interviews Philip Kotler said that he no longer autographs his old books, that these books were written about another market, but today they are harmful and the models described in them do not work. That’s why today the main value is not knowledge per se, but the filter, which allows to highlight and organize only the necessary and applicable information in a particular situation.
2. Experience not only helps but also hinders. Yes, there are things whose understanding comes only with experience, there are algorithms that have been modified to automatism, there are nuances that sometimes cannot be explained logically, but can only be known at a subconscious level.
But there is a very slippery slope: when we are rolling on rails, we lose flexibility, we become less sensitive to change, there is a “full competence syndrome”, the absolute certainty that everything is done correctly, you can only do so and in no other way. And this is not the case. Once your shop was the only one within a five-kilometer radius, and now one of many.
3. You can’t invent a bike anymore, but you can learn to ride it. Any company is created for profit, questions of mission, purpose, ideology, values are relevant only for those who can earn without it. There are only two ways to make a debit with credit: earn more or spend less. And then the options begin, and the list of possible instruments at Mageworx store is standard for everyone. But the combination of actions applied in a particular situation is unique.
It is necessary to choose a direction and move slowly, but constantly and purposefully: invented, counted, implemented, tested, then advertised, promoted, analyzed. And we make adjustments as we go, without jerks. The most difficult thing is that this is not a one-time action. It is constant work which assumes the continuous analysis of sales, an estimation of change of indicators and formation, and then introduction of decisions on the basis of the made estimation. And no magic.
The crisis becomes a test of “strength” for any business. The buyer votes with his money for someone who has a good customer service and logistics, and prices are true. The one who is able to provide quality services and service will remain in the market.
A good sale is a sale brought to an end. Do not refuse to return the goods and monitor the manufacturer’s warranty obligations. In all disputed cases, try to conduct a dialogue so that the “visitor” was satisfied. In times of crisis, the customer is particularly hard and hard-working, so he wants to enjoy the purchase. So give him this opportunity. Build a partnership with the buyer during the dialogue, while selling the product as yourself.