How Much Time Do Your Customers Spend in the Fitting Room? (& Why Should You Care?)
Wouldn’t it be great if your associates could take a peek into your fitting rooms?
The try-on is crucial to the buying decision, which is one reason fitting rooms are so important to retailers’ financial health. If associates could — at a glance — see which customers need service, they could provide support when most needed in the purchase process.
And yet, for obvious customer privacy reasons, there is usually no visibility in this area of the store (although call buttons can be pretty useful in providing customer service when necessary).
Fortunately, you can gather a number of critical data points without stirring up a privacy lawsuit. For starters, you can examine statistics, such as the average length of a fitting room visit.
Average Time in the Fitting Room
Our research shows that fitting room visits are usually between 5–8 minutes, with a mean visit length of just under six minutes. If you discover that the average duration of a fitting room visit in your store is significantly shorter, look into the factors below for clues.
What Factors Affect Time in the Fitting Room?
Ideally, a short fitting room visit would indicate a shopper who had essentially decided on their purchases and just wanted to validate that decision. Of course, this isn’t always the case. Reasons for a short fitting room visit can include:
- Customer Engagement: If your sales associates aren’t engaging the shopper on the sales floor, they’ll be more likely to try on fewer items (as well as less likely to visit the fitting room in the first place).
- Fitting Room Service: Once in the fitting room, a customer who isn’t offered help with additional sizes may quickly re-dress and leave. Or, if your store is notorious for poor fitting room service, they may take multiple sizes and styles into the fitting room so that they won’t have to re-dress.
- Lack of Physical Comfort: Too hot, too cold, too cramped, poor lighting or mirrors — these are just a few of the challenges with physical comfort in the fitting room, and any one of them can cause a customer to beat a hasty retreat.
- Seasonal Line: The appeal (or lack thereof) of your seasonal line can again affect how many items your customers try on.
Metrics of Fitting Room Success
From door traffic to queue wait times, there are many data points you can use to assess how well your stores are performing. The length of time spent trying things on is important because we know the try-on is the moment of truth, the moment when customers are making their final purchase decision.
But there are any other key performance indicators (KPIs) that retailers should consider when evaluating the health of the fitting room? Absolutely!
The number of fitting room visits, combined with door traffic, provides insight into the conversion rate of shoppers making it into the fitting room. If this conversion is less than 25%, it’s time to examine your strategies for customer engagement.
If your fitting rooms are equipped with call buttons, you can ensure customers receive the service they need when they need it, without having to rely on disruptive and ineffective door-knocking. In addition, the number of fitting room calls provides data that will help you make informed decisions about staffing levels.
Once customers have made use of the fitting room call button, they don’t want to wait very long. So call button response times are another KPI.
The length of time your customers spend in your fitting rooms can provide valuable insight into the performance of this area of your store. Often, simple adjustments can go a long way towards improving store performance.