Impulse Buys at Checkout Time Increase More than Bottom Line

Did you know: 65% of retail sales are impulse purchases? While not all of those impulse buys occur at checkout, the queue does represent an undeniable opportunity to use merchandising to boost impulse sales. And more. It’s much more than that. Beyond sales, these in-line, last-minute purchases enhance the customer experience and cultivate happier customers.

Below are some considerations worth factoring in as you build or refine your queue system, including ways to influence the impulse.

Customer Delight

When a customer waits in a queue, their experience matters. The more you are able to engage your customer in a positive, even pleasurable experience, the shorter the perceived wait time can be. You can create an enjoyable sensory experience with visuals (think colors and textures), sounds, and even scents that will disrupt the moment and generate interest and distraction.1 68% of customers who leave a queue do so because they feel you don’t care.2 Cultivating a positive experience promotes the feeling of being cared about and can deepen customer loyalty.  If shoppers choose one or more additional items to purchase while in the queue, those pleasurable feelings will be reinforced with positive associations each time they see or use those products.1  Place products with delight in mind.

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How to Make “Checking Out” a Great Time to “Check It Out”

We’ve written a lot on this blog about the role of in-queue merchandising and how it can turn the dreaded waiting line into a more enjoyable and profitable one. This win-win is possible when you give customers something to check out while they’re checking out!

Customers can come to anticipate and enjoy waiting in line as a time to discover new products for which they weren’t even shopping. And considering 65% of retail sales are driven by impulse shopping, your queue can become a robust profit center with merchandising in place.

Once the basic structure of your line is organized for maximum efficiency and productivity, you can focus your attention on delighting customers with compelling products, information, and entertainment – in essence, designing their queue shopping experience. Keeping customers occupied through shopping while they wait gives you a chance to direct their attention to new products, sale items, complementary products or other items that you want to promote. It’s also a great time to reinforce your brand. Make sure customers witness the quality of your products and customer service all the way through the line, because while they shop they are also checking you out.

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7 Aspects of a Positive Waiting Line Experience

waiting line experience

While waiting is inevitable, the pain of waiting is not. Customers form opinions about a brand all along the journey of their experience with the company. If they have a great experience leading up to the queue and a negative experience in the queue, this will likely be a lost customer. On the other hand, if the queue reinforces a positive experience, that customer can become a loyal one. The difference lies in some simple principles that connect with, empower, and nurture customers.

There are many reasons why a customer may ditch the line, but Rockefeller Corporation found that 68 percent of customers leave a business because they think it doesn’t care about them. Below are 7 aspects of a positive queue experience to help you make sure your customers know that you understand them, care about them and truly want to serve them in ways that work well for them.Continue Reading