Attracting customers to your shop

For the modern independent shop, there is more competition than ever from large high street chains and supermarkets.
Fortunately, there are many who still understand the importance of local independent shops, but how could you increase the number of new customers who walk into your shop?

Will Hemner, a passionate travel, home, tech and lifestyle writer offers some top tips for enticing some more customers into your shop.
4 Top Tips for Attracting New Customers:
Top Tip 1: Flyers and posters
Flyers still remain one of the cheapest and most effective ways companies can attract new business locally. Pick an area, perhaps within a mile, of your shop and distribute a catchy, well-presented flyer to people’s doors.
Just telling people to come will not cut it, you must offer them a reason to try your store – a special offer or money off voucher should do the trick.
This old-fashioned way of drumming up business is a percentages game; many people will bin it without looking but even if a small amount of people come to your shop then it will have worked.
Top Tip 2: Offer extras
Everyone loves an offer, and wants more out of a deal and extra benefits with a purchase. This type of thing is good to advertise outside your shop, on a billboard or in the window, for example, or even via social media platforms, which brings us on to the next point…
Top Tip 3: Social networking
If you haven’t already, you should sign your shop up to as many social networking platforms as you see fit. At the very least your shop should have a presence on the most popular ones: Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Encourage regular customers and friends to connect with you to help establish a presence and build your network.
Further to this, you should make sure that you post regular updates of things that will interest current or potential customers. Not only does this show that your shop is tech-savvy and appealing for the younger audience, but social networking sites can spread the word-of-mouth much further than your local area. A well-managed social network account should run competitions where people can win items from your store and offer limited-time discounts that are advertised only online. Both of these should increase the interest in your shop. Posting images of new fabric collections and projects can be a very simple but effective way of engaging with potential customers.
Top Tip 4: Make the window stand out
The window of a shop can so often be ignored by a storeowner but it is a valuable tool for attracting customers. Remember, this is the first thing a potential customer will see so if it is colourful and uncluttered it might well convince them to come in and have a look.
For the best results, rearranging the window every week will show that you care about keeping things interesting.
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