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Revenue Under the Microscope

If you're a retailer, increasing store revenue is a perpetual goal. What do you see when you look at revenue? One big number? Or a bunch of little ones? While the big number is important, bringing the little ones — your individual sales transactions — into better focus may pay off in a big way.

Try this. Figure out your average individual transaction amount, increase it by 1%, and look at what happens to the big number. That's growth from the bottom up — and here are some strategies that might help you achieve it.

Store Structure

The more time customers spend in your store, the more they may buy. Does the layout of your store encourage browsing? Consider making changes that will encourage shoppers to walk around more. For example, if your "destination" products and top sellers are in the front, try moving them deeper into the store. Also, consider arranging your aisles so they don't lead directly to the checkout counter — and out of the store.

Product Placement

That doesn't mean you should make things difficult to find. Products should be arranged in an organized, intuitive way (and within reach whenever possible), and sale items should be easy to locate. Use off-shelf displays, such as end caps and stand-alone fixtures, to call attention to featured products. Be creative. Pairing sale items with complementary nonsale items may boost sales.

Make sure your store is fully stocked at all times. The inventory sitting in your back room can't help increase revenue. While you don't want to overload the checkout area, some strategic product placements can add last-minute impulse sales.

Staffing and Service

Employees have an enormous impact on the "shopping experience." Providing customers with adequate access to informed employees is good for business. The more eclectic your product mix, the more you might have to spend on payroll. Adapt staffing levels to have maximum help during peak times so customer service doesn't suffer.

Make sure your employees know that customer service is a top priority. When you get feedback, whether it's positive or negative, share it with your staff. You may be able to add value — and revenue — by offering gift wrapping, delivery, or other ancillary services.

 
 

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