How can retailers combat the rising business costs?

The current economic situation in the UK is proving difficult to navigate for high street businesses. With the rising cost of living, wages not matching inflation and consumers having less disposable income than ever to spend at bricks and mortar shops, retailers are finding it extremely challenging.

Increased business running costs

All of this, of course, is exacerbated by national-level UK business rates which are huge in comparison to other countries, rising energy bills and higher inflation which means businesses have to pay more for their products and materials, as well as higher shipping costs to get them delivered.

The lasting effects COVID-19

And the impacts of the pandemic still can’t be forgotten. When shops were forced to close, significant revenue for brick-and-mortar retailers was lost and the impact of more customers adapting to shopping online because of this.

So, with the above in mind, it’s harder than ever to keep a retail shop maintained, with the potential low footfall that can’t make up for the increased costs, which all severely eats into a company’s profits and can prevent them from growing.

So how can retailers fight back?  Here are 4 tips that can help…

1 - Sell multichannel

It's no surprise, that during the pandemic, many brick-and-mortar retailers turned to multichannel selling. Selling in-store, via your own eCommerce website, internet marketplaces like Amazon, Wayfair and eBay as well as via your social media accounts - these are all great ways to encourage sales and maximise profits.

Multichannel selling will increase your visibility and brand, as well as tap into more areas of the market and allow you to gain more new customers, and therefore make more sales.

However, to do this successfully you may need to replace your outdated legacy systems with an intuitive and customer-focused retail solution that provides a seamless customer experience.

Choose a solution that does most of the work for you and allows you to manage your multichannel selling efficiently and cost-effectively.

2 - Automate your retail processes

Re-evaluate your shop processes, is there anything that can be automated saving you and your staff valuable time? By employing the right technology and saving staff from mundane tasks they are free to provide excellent service to your customers. Perhaps taking a tablet to the shop floor so that they can assist customers in finding the right products.

Plus, you may be wasting too much time managing inventory so by using technology to automatically track stock levels and understand what’s selling, as well as automating when stock is running low, will not only give you back valuable time but can also prevent you from losing customers.  According to a McKinsey report 60% of surveyed consumers who have faced out-of-stock products in the last three months, only 13% say they waited for an item to come back in stock and about 70% switched retailers or brands instead.

So it can really help you stay on top of your inventory, keep your customers and give you back valuable time to develop your business.

3 - Keep control of costs

Putting up prices can be difficult in the current climate as many retailers value their customer relationships and don’t wish to alienate their customers or give them a reason to go elsewhere, so keeping control of costs is another way to affect the bottom line.

One option, especially if you want to sell multichannel or are already doing so, is to switch to an all-in-one solution.  

Many retailers will probably have their ePOS system and eCommerce platform operating separately when selling in-store and online. But as you can imagine, this overload of different software may mean you're paying too much for both of these, and on top of all of the other financial factors affecting you right now, this is the last thing you need.

So switching to an all-in-one retail system  could help to reduce costs.

4 - Set up a loyalty programme

Customers love to feel valued and you can show your appreciation by leveraging the right technology to provide a loyalty programme to your customers and incentivise them to keep coming back to you.

Retailers that can build trust and encourage loyalty are more likely to gain repeat business and retain their customers.

How can ShopTill-e help?

There is a way reduce costs and save time by centralising your multichannel selling with ShopTill-e’s innovative all-in-one retail system.

The ePOS system and ecommerce platform combines into just one system to sell in-store and online and it’s never been easier to monitor inventory management with real-time synchronised stock levels where you only have to add your products once, rather than confusingly repeating the stock-taking process over two systems.

This allows you to stay on track and in control of your business, with access to oversee everything that is happening from one place. You can add extra users, tills and outlets whenever you need to, meaning growth is aided and simplified as well as offering promotions, discounts, loyalty programmes and gift vouchers to your customers to encourage sales.

The plans and pricing are easy to understand and amazing value for money with access to all the features automatically included for each plan - one price - everything included - simple.

Don’t let the current economic situation drive your business down and let ShopTill-e all-in-one retail system help you combat the rising business costs. Book a demo with one of our retail experts or try free for 14 days .

"We switched from our current separated POS and website supplier to ShopTill-e due to issues of integration between the two different suppliers. With ShopTill-e the one system does both saves lots of hours and lots of headaches! 

Small features which include gift vouchers automatically being used in store and on line, as well as one place for all inventory and reporting is a game changer. No more paying multiple subscriptions to multiple software supliers, by making the switch we save hundreds a month." Callum L. Director.

Further reading to save time, reduce costs and encourage sales....

How can you reduce costs at this time? Is it time to change?
Time is money: multi-channel selling the smart way
Accept card payments faster and get paid quicker
Promotions and discounts
3 big reasons why retailers need a multi-channel retail system to sell in-store and sell online, efficiently and cost-effectively

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