Investing in a new liquor point of sale system can be a daunting task and hesitating is a normal reaction when buying a new system for your business. Overcoming that fear of change is a big step – and we’re here to help. Three of the most common reasons business owners don’t want to invest in a new system are:
Is your store stocked for success?
....and improve your customer's’ experience.
As I’m standing in a long line, waiting to buy my “fancy” $20 bottle of wine for a friend’s dinner party, these thoughts start running through my head: “This is taking too long, do I really need this wine? Should I go to a different liquor store? Is there a shorter line? Should I get a cheaper bottle? Now I’m really going to be late.”
Is your store stocked with the right spirits?
Often when people think of St. Patrick’s Day drinks they’ll think of Green Beer, Irish Whiskey, Irish Mist and of course Baileys Irish Cream. Though a great start there are so many popular mixed drinks for your customers’ St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. We’ve listed out five we found to be on many people’s list of favorites. Let us know what drinks you find popular in your area!
If you don’t already own a voice activated smart device like an iPhone, Amazon Echo or a Google Home you will have at least heard of them. These devices are triggered with a wake-up word followed by a properly phrased question or command. For example, with the iPhone you would say, “Siri, who was the 34th president of the United States?” or “Siri, what is today’s forecast?”
Last year around the holidays I unsuccessfully drove to three liquor stores to find Blue Curacao. At the 4th store with just one bottle on the shelf, the business owners said “Why is there such a run on Blue Curacao this year?” I pulled out my phone and showed him an incredibly delicious picture of a drink recipe circulating Facebook called “Jack Frost”, and one of the main ingredients was….Blue Curacao.
#1: Lessen the “Guy Vibe”.
Lessening the guy vibe is easy, and with a few minor changes you can instantly transform the shopping experience. While men care about safety, cleanliness, and service, women have much higher expectations in these areas and they believe that stores they frequent should exceed their minimum standards. Make sure the inside and outside of your store is well lit. Clean up clutter, create open spaces, and make aisles easy to navigate. When possible, employ female staff to reduce gender barriers and to add an extra layer of comfort for the women that prefer to engage with other women (especially during the holidays when customers are shopping for gifts).
#2: Add Interest to Every Touchpoint
In today’s world of instant gratification, customers love to walk away with nuggets of knowledge. Regardless of the purpose of the purchase, everyone enjoys feeling like they gained something– especially when it is unexpected. When customers feel the value, they’ll keep coming back for more (and they’ll likely tell others about their experience—which is exactly what you want). Consider the following as ways you can wow your customers:
- Instead of posting only the wine rating on the shelf tag, customize the tags within your POS system to showcase ratings of staff members, customers, etc. Adding a personal touch on products you chose to highlight will likely lead to increased sales. This also gives you a solid platform for soliciting reviews via Yelp and other social media platforms. Everyone loves to be heard, and considering women dominate men in social media usage, targeting them specifically in this area will be to your advantage.
- Post “Did You Know” facts on your receipts. Fun facts give your customers something to talk about with their friends and family (and offer word-of-mouth promotion). The receipt becomes more than just a receipt when customers learn that Winston Churchill’s mother invented the “Manhattan”.
- Cross promote items throughout the store. Pairing suggestions placed strategically will not only increase average cart sales, but will add authenticity to your level of expertise. For example, an Extra Dark (70%) chocolate bar perfectly pairs with a Cabernet Sauvignon, so have staff members make the recommendation while helping customers. Don’t sell it? Don’t worry. The mere suggestion is enough to showcase why a customer should continue to frequent your store.
- Trigger automated email marketing messages through your POS system based on items customers purchased. When you collect customer data and build profiles, your POS system can email thank you notes to customers for their purchase and provide them cool tips, such as a recipe for the perfect Negroni (since you know they just bought a fifth of Barr Hill Tom Cat).
There is no better way to garner the attention of your female customers than to organize events just for them. Instead of the typical wine tasting, host spirit tastings that educate guests on terminology, production and crafting classic cocktails. Encourage guests to bring spouses, partners, BFFs, etc. Consider partnering with a local female master sommelier or brewer to heighten the experience. An add-on to create the perfect party is to invite pairing experts (cheese, meat, chocolate, etc.) to showcase their goods and services. The cross promotion will be great and it will likely bring new customers into your store.
Overall, if you create an environment that is female-friendly you’ll inadvertently create an environment that is more friendly and desirable for every customer. You’ll find that not only will the women shoppers keep coming back, but the men will too.