Creating an Excellent Black Friday Customer Experience
Black Friday has always been the most exciting day of the year for both customers and employees. Whether you open the doors early on Thanksgiving evening or at the wee hours of Friday morning, there has always been an exciting rush of adrenaline as the hardcore loyal Black Friday shoppers prepare to storm into the store to snag as many deals as they possibly can. The shelves get wiped clean, team members are running around helping customers, and every register is open with lines to the back of the building. It’s pure chaos, but it’s chaos with a plan. The retailer just has to make sure they are staffed on the sales floor, at the registers, and other tasks (carts, cleaning, warehouse) to handle the volume of customers. Right?
Well, this year and recent years have been a little different. There are the same hardcore customers lining up for the doorbusters, but there is also something else going on. There is an army of virtual customers lined up ready to storm as well. These are customers still enjoying Thanksgiving with their family or sitting at home watching movies in their pajamas. It is an army of customers ordering the same great deals online and mostly from their phone. Although this flexible shopping is extremely convenient to the customer, it presents enormous new challenges to retailers. Instead of handling customers all shopping in the store, they are now also challenged to handle customers who want their items delivered to their home, picked up in store, or even hand delivered to their vehicle that is pulled up right outside. How do you handle the customers in store but also fulfillment, shipping, delivery, and restocking at the same time? It requires multi-channel planning and having team members that are cross trained to do a multitude of tasks in the store. The new way of staffing and planning is sure to stress-test teams across the holiday season.
However, you can be successful. It all comes down to combining a fortified plan, solid processes, and technology. Whether it’s anticipating demand by channel, prioritizing tasks for your employees, or giving you real time data to make business decisions, Reflexis is here to help. Early signs point to customers spending record amounts this holiday season and brick and mortar locations are still the center of holiday excitement. We just have to continue to evolve, plan, and anticipate more than ever to meet the every-day evolving needs of our customers.