The other day I was visiting a textile store in my place, Kochi. As soon as I entered, one store executive came and asked what I’m looking for. I said, I need to check out the Men’s section and she directed me to the right place. I walked into that area slowly checking out some of the shirt designs. Within a minute, another sales executive came and asked, “Sir, which size, full sleeve/half sleeve”, I replied and he pointed out some area, and I went there. He again came behind me and said, “Sir, are you looking for cotton or silk, we have other brands on the other side”. I’m a person who likes to checkout on my own, different designs/patterns and I got a little irritated when the sales guy again started giving his recommendations. I told him politely I can manage myself. He left the scene. I spend a few more minutes in that brand, moved to look into other brand designs. The same guy came again. I understood there is no point in telling him. I said I’ll come back later and slowly backed out.

While coming down I thought if I can find some good collection of churidars for my wife so that later on I can take her and come. I went to the churidar section to be obviously confronted with a sales girl. The usual question repeated and I said, I just came to check out the new designs and will come back later to buy “. Thankfully that sales executive left me and I had the independence to search my own only to know that it lasted for just 5minutes. A person dressed up as security, approached me and asked,” Sir, didn’t any one approach you in in helping out”. I really got irritated, after all these continuous pestering, and left the scene as soon as possible.

What mentioned above is a typical scenario happening across most of the retail stores today. This is a phenomenon practiced across globe by most of the retail stores and to an extend this was effective in pushing the sales. But today in the world of technological advancements, where people does online purchase, go through different websites and experiment themselves, giving them their independence is the key. Today’s generation wants to check out on their own, discuss with her boyfriend or girlfriend on what to purchase, and want to roam around for selections. They don’t come with a decision in their mind, but they want their mind to decide on spot. Technically speaking, people want impulse purchase to trigger their shopping. This change in purchase behavior, if rightly used can increase the sales of a retail store.

What should the retail stores do to increase the impulse purchase? Two most important recommendations are

  • Provide the customers their own space. Let them walk around and see what all selections are there in the store. If they need any help sales executive can reach out to them
  • Cross sell the products by advertisements
  • Give the visual merchandiser opportunities to experiment and try out new strategies

Feel free to mention if you had a similar kind of experience and what was your take on it.