Picture this: It’s Monday morning, and you’re huddled together with the rest of your brand’s LT talking about what you always talk about at this time – the weekend’s business. During this meeting, you’re probably looking at a lot of metrics. Across every channel, online and in-store, you’re scanning the same numbers: topline sales, gross margin, units per transaction, traffic, conversion.Read More
Between countless unpredictable variables, constant changes in shopping trends, and ongoing crisis management, creating seamless retail experiences for customers isn’t easy. Here are few strategies to set your brand up for success.Read More
It was 2012, Obama had just been elected for a second term, hurricane Sandy had just devastated the northeast, Gangam Style was rocking the charts, and Kyle Nel went to work for Lowe’s Companies, Inc. Kyle Nel, EVP, Uncommon Partners Lab Corporate Innovation & Former Exec Director & Founder Lowe’s Innovation Labs, started his journey as a behavioral scientist. Kyle was just really obsessed with how people and organizations can change. Initially, he went about his exploration from an academic perspective, studying how people make decisions.Read More
Six months ago we sponsored a NAPCO research study around retailers’ ability to execute against recommended health and safety guidelines. The focus of the study was Total Retail’s Top 100 omni-channel retailers. Three months later, NAPCO sent shoppers back out into stores to see if brands improved.
As part of our sponsorship of the report, Retail Zipline got access to the raw data that made up their Retailer Readiness: COVID-19 In-Store Safety Index Part II report. We analyzed it to understand how our customers are doing and to see what other insights we could uncover.
Here’s how Retail Zipline Customers Compare to Other Retailers in Health and Safety Execution:
A year ago, Covid-19 brought non-essential brick-and-mortar retail stores to a halt. While businesses everywhere closed their doors for the first time, grocery stores exploded. Grocery associates were quickly designated as “essential workers” and products began flying off the shelves.
While brands in other retail verticals had the benefit of time to prepare for reopening, grocery stores were reacting and adapting on the fly. The customer experience transformed instantly, launching us into a future age of grocery defined by online ordering, curbside pickup, and delivery, while stores still maintain a safe and shoppable environment.
At Zipline, we set out to investigate how grocery stores navigated this new territory. We partnered with Coyle Hospitality Group to send secret shoppers into major grocery stores to uncover how they were performing compared to other brands in their category, as well as leaders in other verticals. This study set out to explore safety, employee engagement, and sales execution, and we uncovered some surprising insights.
Today, WWD covered the news about a retail store execution study we just completed with Coyle Hospitality Group, the world’s leading provider of customer experience consulting, quality assurance, and mystery shopping. The study focused on ~100 retailers in the US and Canada across different categories, including apparel, beauty, home improvement, grocery, C-store, pharmacy, and more.
We send Coyle’s secret shoppers into these stores in November to answer questions across five categories: speed and convenience; signage; health and safety; sales execution; and holiday readiness. We wanted to find out what the holiday shopping season felt like for consumers (scary? festive?) and how store execution was faring amidst another wave of coronavirus.
In addition to the secret shopping data, we looked at brands’ websites to understand their corporate initiatives and Glassdoor ratings to understand employee satisfaction. Analysis of the complete data set provided us with some interesting insights.Read More
Retail task management software, sometimes called retail communications software, is software that is typically purchased by the corporate office of a retail brand to help store teams understand what’s expected of them.
Most task management solutions provide store managers and teams with a checklist of store activities that need to be completed according to a specific timeline. Since retail associates are deskless workers, task management software is typically optimized for mobile devices.Read More
The grocery industry is seeing faster innovation than ever before, fueled, in part, by the pandemic. As grocers looked to meet customer expectations, many focused on contactless shopping, putting extra resources around online ordering, curbside pickup and delivery. In a Total Retail Podcast, Hy-Vee’s SVP and Chief Digital Officer, Jessica Ringena, said that the pandemic “accelerated e-commerce and online shopping by several years.”Read More
If you have ever wondered how the best retailers in the world ensure that 100% of their fleet see and act on every HQ directive, you can stop wondering. It just doesn’t happen. The truth is that average store execution hovers at less than 30% and even the best retailers who focus on communication with the fleet don’t break 90%. And, that’s for retailers with simple organizational structures such as a single headquarters office and company-owned stores.
In the wake of the Covid-19 crisis, communication glitches now comes with a higher price: mistakes will adversely impact employee trust, commitment and loyalty. How well a company’s employees perform in their roles will influence how customers evaluate that company’s level of safety measures and concern for their well-being. And those impressions will influence their decisions as to if or how soon they return to do business with that company.
Employees need to see consistency in a company’s direction and expectations so they can confidently follow the directives and perform their tasks. With this in mind, it’s imperative that companies, perhaps more than ever before, ensure messages are aligned from all departments.Read More
All feedback – even the most anecdotal – is useful. Consumer trends are changing faster than ever, and executive teams need to flex and respond accordingly. Feedback can tell them if their marketing campaigns are working. It can inform the next season’s ad buys or inventory investments. It can pinpoint where training is needed, and where teams are struggling.
But all feedback loops are not created equal.
Learn the four main types of feedback retailers need, along with the right (and wrong) ways to collect it.Read More
Covid-19 is driving gas stations and c-stores to undergo radical changes to ensure customer and staff health and safety . While operational changes are easy to list out on your website, driving in-store execution is a big challenge, especially if you have multiple stores with hourly employees. How do you get the message out to every single associate and ensure that it’s heard? If you’re like most c-stores, you’re using multiple channels to reach them, but somehow your messages aren’t making it all the way down to the stores and execution is still suffering.
When Zipline co-founder, Melissa Wong was wooing her technical co-founder, Jeremy Baker, to join her in her mission to improve retail store communications, she had him read a research paper by Pareto’s Dr. Hugh Phillips, an expert on the cognitive psychology of shopping, what consumers perceive in store and how they process information in their decision making. The research paper revealed that over 90% of effectiveness of a retail marketing campaign is lost between concept (at HQ) to execution (in stores). Read more about why store execution suffers and what you can do about it.
Loss prevention professionals are constantly updating policies to meet the newest threats, but it’s up to store teams to execute them.Read More
Technology is the key to success for brick-and-mortar retailers, but it’s up to store teams to use it. Follow these steps to make your rollout a success.Read More
Even the best category management can fall apart if stores don’t execute tasks like replenishment, setting promotional displays, completing recalls, etc.Read More
Brick-and-mortar retailers can lure online shoppers by offering compelling in-store experiences.Read More
Why digitally native retailers are turning to physical stores as a new growth channel.Read More
What retailers can learn from Kohl’s right-size makeover.Read More