Retail Signage Printed On-Demand Can Improve Customer Experience And Sales

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With customer experience increasingly being prioritised as a key differentiator, particularly within the food and beverage market, OKI discusses how can you create maximum impact in a short space of time.

In the world of fast-moving consumer goods, speed, price and convenience are all essential factors when it comes to both getting customers through the shop or supermarket door and ensuring that they leave feeling satisfied. It’s no secret that the retail market is struggling, and with only two minutes to impress customers, according to Quora, the countdown begins from the moment a customer walks through the door.

The flexibility to adapt in-store offers and advertising quickly while ensuring customers have a smooth journey around the store, has become more crucial than ever, contributing to both immediate sales and future loyalty.

As well as using intelligent, pre-planned marketing campaigns to set the customer agenda and boost sales of key lines, the ability to react to an important sales opportunity linked to a sudden change in weather or social media food trend are also essential for physical stores, which in turn demands fast access to a wide range of printed customer-facing signage.

Retailers that are equipped to deliver this essential visual communication on-demand, on the shop floor inevitably have an important advantage. Alongside strategic end-of-aisle positioning, eye-catching signage plays an important role when it comes to promoting sales of key items.

Likewise, while shop window stickers and signs are a proven way to boost footfall and draw customers in to the store, double sided hanging banners and point-of-sale signage directing customers where you want them to go, have an equally essential role to play in the sales cycle, especially when it comes to impulse buying and other spontaneous purchases.

Rather than wait for printed marketing collateral to be sent to store, retail-ready High Definition Colour printers give supermarkets the ability to react to a sudden heatwave, news report or online food trend by creating large and small marketing and point-of-sale materials on demand.

Cost-effective and practical, this clear in-store signage not only improves the customer experience by helping them to find what they are looking for but can also be used strategically to draw shoppers towards high margin products, as well as promoting lines that are underperforming.

At a time when delivering a frictionless customer experience is high on both the online and offline retail agenda, fulfilling a basic requirement to enable customers to find what they need not only helps to promote sales but can also avoid frustrating shoppers by making them seek out an assistant to ask for help – or, worse still, driving them to abandon their shop.

Small enough for use in back offices, the latest retail-ready printers offer the flexibility to create large format, high-impact double sided banners and floor signage, as well as instructional shelf labels and gondola frames, making the most of valuable shelf and aisle space.

At the shelf-edge, rather than simply highlighting a price discount, retailers can make the most of this ability to print on demand by quoting a recent critic’s endorsement or tapping into a national marketing campaign with printed materials featuring eye-catching images and clear text. As well as promoting sales, this information can speed-up decision-making by helping to guide the undecided shopper and, crucially, make them feel good about their choice.

A study (1) conducted by psychologists at Columbia and Stanford University found that, rather than increase satisfaction and sales, having a wide choice of products can in fact serve to demotivate shoppers, resulting in fewer sales.

Rather than leaving customers feeling overwhelmed when looking at a choice of products, point-of-sale material such as price tags and product information supports decision making, empowering the customer, as well as encouraging spur-of-the-moment, spontaneous purchases. Likewise, with dietary requirements a priority for a growing number of shoppers, it can also be used to highlight a key ingredient or emphasise the fact that a product is nut or gluten-free, for example.

Italian craft beer producer Zion has significantly increased its sales through eye-catching pre-cut collateral printed in a range of formats through OKI’s Retail Solutions. From event wristbands to bottleneckers, menus and banners, Zion has established itself as a popular brand in the crowded craft beer market by creating waterproof, tearproof collateral quickly and to a highly professional quality in-house.

OKI’s Retail Signage Solutions include OKI’s C800 Series digital LED A3 colour printers, which are the smallest A3 printers on the market, making them perfect for the retail environment where space is at a premium. It offers the flexibility to print on pre-cut media including small-format shelf-edge labels, price tags and shelf wobblers as well as large, double sided banners up to 1.3m. It also handles waterproof media – suitable all around the store, from outdoor pavement signs, and alongside chilled and other fresh produce, or in the freezer aisles.

At a time of continued pressure for supermarkets and fierce competition for loyalty, customer experience matters more than ever. For this reason, the ability to react quickly to unpredictable seasonal weather or tap into changing food trends and dietary demands through inspirational customer-facing signage printed on-demand undoubtedly offers a vital tool in the retail armoury.

(1) https://medium.com/@FlorentGeerts/the-jam-experiment-how-choice-overloads-makes-consumers-buy-less-d610f8c37b9b

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