If you run any type of business that relies on foot traffic, then you will probably be aware of how tricky it is to create that buzz to attract people. Whether you are running a restaurant, clothes boutique or a nail parlor, you need to find a way to grab the attention of passers by and entice them into your business.

The importance of driving foot traffic

We live in a world where everything and everyone is online. In this modern age of being connected to the internet all the time and the ability to purchase whatever we can imagine from the internet, foot traffic, especially for retail shops, has never been more important.

E-commerce has exploded over the past decade, and nowadays, more and more people are doing their shopping online. However, for some types of shopping such as footwear or clothing, nothing can replace the real experience of walking into a shop and trying out different products. The customer experience is of huge importance to the retail industry and is vital in achieving the main aim of any business, which is to make sales and revenue.

There are many different things that you can try to accomplish this aim, though a number of them will be based on the type of business that you are running. In this article, we will take a look at some of the most popular and easy to implement ways of pulling the customers.

Have a great sign

This is one of the most obvious ways to attract the attention of passers by, but strangely, not a lot of people put too much thought or attention into their signs. If you have a shop sign, you should check to make sure that it’s clean, is not damaged and that the lights inside are working. Your store sign is one of the first things that people will look at, so it’s vital that you make a good first impression.

If you are looking for a new sign, then why not consider neon lighting. It’s a fantastic and very affordable way to create a unique sign that will easily attract the attention of people outside. There are a number of places where you can find a great range of neon lighting such as NeonMama.com, who specialize in this unique lighting solution.

Have an attractive window display

In addition to your sign, the other thing that people are going to see before entering your store is your window display. It’s important that you place your best products out at the front in the window display and make it one that is going to attract the curiosity of passers by, as well as entice them to come inside.

A window presentation that has been carefully thought out and implemented can be a great source of foot traffic into your store. If possible, it’s a great idea to change the display frequently throughout the year, keeping people interested in what you are stocking for the new season, as well as any sales or discounts that you might be offering.

Make it clear that you are open

There are lots of stores that are dimly light which actually make it difficult to see if they are open or not. If you have a small store front, make sure that it’s well lit and add some obvious signs that you are open, such as a classic “open” sign on your door, or a welcome mat outside. 

You could also place details of your opening hours, so if you are in fact closed, at least people will know your opening times and can come back another day.

Use sandwich advertising boards

Sandwich boards are a great (and cheap) way to attract attention to your store. Placing one outside, as long as you are permitted to do so, can give an additional nudge to people to stop by and visit your store. You could use it to promote any sales you have, or if you have a new range of products in stock. 

For places such as cafes or restaurants, they are a great way to promote any specials you might have, or even ask a question such as “Isn’t it time for coffee yet?” You can be really creative with sandwich boards, and can add a new message everyday if you want to.

Promote your business online

As mentioned previously, we live in an age where everyone is online, and for any business, it is vital to have a strong online presence. If you don’t already have a website, you need to get one developed as soon as possible. There are lots of excellent online tools that you can use to build your own professional looking website in no time at all. However, if you are looking to have an e-commerce website created, then it will probably be best to speak to a web developer who can take care of the project for you.

It’s also important to be active on social media, so make sure you create pages for your business on Facebook, Instagram and some of the other popular social media platforms.

Consider starting a loyalty program

It’s one thing to attract a customer into your store and make a sale, but another thing to get them to keep coming back time after time. You need to build their trust and loyalty, and a great way to do this is to run your own loyalty program.

There are a number of digital loyalty systems that you can use which make it very easy to start running your program. You can reward customers with points every time they visit your store or purchase something. And when they’ve collected a certain number of points, they will be entitled to some form of rewards, such as a 10% discount on their purchase, or if you are running a hospitality business, maybe they can collect a free coffee or meal. 

Some final words

There are lots of great ways that you can increase foot traffic into your store, and some of the things you can implement are actually very cheap and easy to set up. Good signage is one of the most important elements for promoting your store or restaurant and attracting customers, and neon lighting is a great way to stand out among the crowd.

Also, do not underestimate the importance of a good online presence. With technology and internet speeds increasing all the time, it’s never been more important to have an easy-to-use, well optimized and fast website for your business.

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