How Brick and Mortar Stores can Compete within the Changing Industry
It is imperative to understand who you are and what sets your business apart from everyone else. By thoughtfully defining your business, you can differentiate your store from your competition. Creating a strong brand identity will help the shopper think of your store first. Even if your store has been around for 100 years, it is still important to understand your story about who you are and what makes you different.
Who Are You: The standard answer may be "a grocery store" or "a retailer", but it is important to know what your business is all about. Having a well defined story lets all those associated with your business, whether it be an employee, a vendor or a distributor understand your company so everyone can help you drive your business forward. This clarity will help you target your efforts more clearly to communicate to your customer more effectively. Remember that the shopping environment is constantly changing and you need to change with it.
Having a well defined story lets all those associated with your business, whether it be an employee, a vendor or a distributor understand your company so everyone can help you drive your business forward.
What is Unique About Your Store: What are the unique PODS (points of differentiation) or products in your store? Are you known for your freshly ground beef or speciality breads? It's no longer sufficient to be just a grocery store. If you can not select any areas that make you unique, then it's time to start. According to Progressive Grocer, May 2011 "The strides achieved by the supermarket industry in recent years in moving from a product-centric to a customer-centric approach have brought forth notable transformation of food retailers from basic purveyors of food and household necessities, to sophisticated providers of quality products, intuitive services and affordable solutions".
Steven Burd, CEO of Safeway, is quoted in saying "a brand, in its simplest terms, is a consumer promise, one that the consumers know about, and consistently delivered. While we knew that the content of the store was a piece of that, another piece....was have a new look and feel (for) the stores themselves."
Again, the questions are "who are you" and "what is unique about your store".