In today’s digital age, no industry has been hit quite as hard as the high street retail outlets. With online shopping being all the rage, it’s not difficult to see why more and more people are opting to use the Internet instead of going to their favourite stores. From clothing and accessories to electronic equipment, almost everything can be purchased via the World Wide Web with very little effort.

To this end, how can traditional shops find success amidst the perpetual rise in popularity of their virtual counterparts?

Use technology to your advantage

We rely on technology more than we care to admit, and whether you’re running a coffee shop or a fashion store, its use can oftentimes make or break a business. You’ll be surprised at how important it can be to have online access over a nice cup of hot coffee or while waiting for a friend or a family member who is busy trying on some new clothes. An investment in a modern flat screen television and a nice TV display stand to promote your products and services can go a long way too.

Technology can be utilised for relatively cost-effective marketing strategies as well. Letting people know about the shop via social media websites can yield tremendously effective results, and creating a website can streamline the business.

Be generous with deals and promotions

Cost is a major factor that goes into the decision-making process of every consumer, especially for those working on a tight budget. By offering various deals and promotions, you’re not only likely to get more business rolling in but more importantly acquire customer loyalty. It serves to give the people a chance to try out products and services that they may not currently have the means to completely afford but may potentially come back in the future to pay full price for.

Don’t neglect customer service

While customer service is certainly available online, it exists in a far more limited capacity than it does with local high street retail outlets. This is one of the few major advantages that more conventional shops have over their online competition. The chance of increasing business success is oftentimes directly proportional to the standards that a shop places on its level of customer service after all and should therefore never been neglected.

It’s easy for high street retail outlets to be overwhelmed with the challenges of keeping up with the world of online shopping. But despite all of these obstacles, traditional shops still have a place in our technologically-driven world. All it takes is making smart investment choices and giving focus to the areas that require the most amount of attention.

By Kar

Dr. Kar works in the interface of digital transformation and data science. Professionally a professor in one of the top B-Schools of Asia and an alumni of XLRI, he has extensive experience in teaching, training, consultancy and research in reputed institutes. He is a regular contributor of Business Fundas and a frequent author in research platforms. He is widely cited as a researcher. Note: The articles authored in this blog are his personal views and does not reflect that of his affiliations.