Courtesy FMS Solutions
Despite supply chain challenges during the Pandemic, here’s how independents can better prepare for the next new normal and maximize customer experience.
As we move into the new year, we want to share these critical insights that can help independent retailers reimagine their customer strategy in 2021 and better anticipate and adapt to the growing pains they can expect in the US economy’s new normal.
- Identify shifts in consumer behavior and shopping patterns: Consumer behavior is constantly changing, and it’s even more volatile amid the pandemic. Being proactive with observing trends in behavior and patterns can provide an edge over the competition.
- Listen to customers, and be flexible with the process: People want their problems solved in one way or another. Listening to feedback and adapting to it will help management better understand what potential customers are looking for.
- Evaluate resource availability: The pandemic has upended the entire system; limitations in resources and logistics don’t have to hinder your business if planned for accordingly.
- Always plan for the unforeseeable: COVID-19 exposed how quickly things can get out of hand without proper planning. Having resources set aside will help soften the blow in times of emergency.
- Establish relationships with several different suppliers and vendors: Relying solely on one supplier or vendor for goods can be a risky proposition, especially now. Having multiple suppliers and vendors ensures your business won’t suffer any bottlenecks from supply chain issues that are out of your control.
- Communicate with your base: Talk to your customers. Consumers are more likely to do business with an organization they feel like they have a relationship or some ties to; simple communication opens the doors to all kinds of opportunities if you know how to ask.
- Transparency is key: During times of crisis, crystal clear communication is essential to building a meaningful relationship with your customers. If you didn’t get something right the first time, acknowledge it, and ensure that the business improves. Grocers are a critical part of the community; it’s essential that they are part of the conversation to serve the community better.
FMS Solutions supports over 5,000 independent retail locations and 400 family-owned companies across the United States, Canada, the Caribbean, and South America. Together, their retailers bring nearly 25% of the independent retail sales in the US.
For more information, visit www.fmssolutions.com.