May 21, 2020 /
Comments Off on Why did retail numbers have an 18% COVID drop?

Why did retail numbers have an 18% COVID drop?

Why did Australian retail sales drop 18% in March?

The pantry peak and toilet paper peaks have passed.

There’s not much left to buy. But there’s something else going on. There’s a total lack of confidence.

As I described to John Stanley on radio 2GB (below), our research shows that 64% of Australians are nervous about visiting crowded spaces.

Those states with the most COVID cases have the lowest confidence.

For example, 89% of Tasmanians (where there was a significant outbreak) are not confident in public places (stores).

Where are they going? Online.

37% of people will now shop more online due to COVID and it’s more pronounced with big spenders.

Those earning over $150K p.a. are now 52% more likely to spend more online.

How do you win back confidence?

Yes you need good processes, but if you have a store, you need to ensure you are operationally COVIFSafe. Customers will visit if they feel safe, that means following processes.

Our mystery shopping work has never been more important.

Catch the radio interview below.

August 09, 2019 /
Comments Off on The best word-of-mouth is?

The best word-of-mouth is?

We all know that word of mouth is critically important. Word-of-mouth can come from several sources including friends, acquaintances, or even a random comment on a social media post or review site.

But one type of word of mouth is more powerful than the others.

At Service Integrity, we do a lot of studies looking at the power of a staff member recommendation.

Imagine you have to buy some garden mulch at the hardware store.  Some are dearer than others, but overall they look about the same.

All the manufacturers are competing for shelf space and flashy packaging, but you still don’t know what to buy.

Then a staff member comes along and you ask,

“Which would you recommend for….?”

This response has a huge impact on buying behaviour.
If you look at the example of our real world client, we found that:

  • the dearer product (competitor) was 1st recommended 64% of the time and has a 56% market share. We now know that recommendation drives market share.
  • the cheaper product (theirs) was only 1st recommended 31% of the time and has a 32% market share.
Recommendation and Market Share

These recommendations are more important than others because they are at the point of sale and provided by someone seen as a product expert.It’s at this point that a lot of brands fall over with their network management.

Keep in mind, whatever your business, your recommendation has a lot of weight.

I recently recommended a service to a friend who had lots of choices, and she took the one I recommended, not the one she researched. 

Don’t underestimate the power of your words, nor the words of the people selling your brand.

July 12, 2019 /
Comments Off on The iconic brand doing a Blockbuster

The iconic brand doing a Blockbuster

An iconic Australian department store (DJ’s) is doing its best Blockbuster impersonation.

They are reducing two Sydney flagship stores to 1, and eliminating 6 floors.

Profits have been declining every year for 15 years (lightening reaction times).

Online sales rose 46.8 per cent and now account for 7.7 per cent of total sales.

But they call it a “retail recession”. 15 years is not a retail recession. More like a crusty brand recession.

The wonderful DJ’s service was legendary, but the legend is built around invisible staff and awful service.

Service counts more than ever in physical stores but it’s the place they cut.

They had/have a chance to fix it if they become an iconic.com.au but they are probably cooked.

They saw their purpose as a multi-brand landlord, but they should have considered themselves to be a multi- brand marketplace.

This would have enabled them to pivot to online.

When service and purpose clash it’s like waves crashing on an outgoing tide.