Walk-in Customers and the current challenge of physical stores

Walk-in Customers and the current challenge of physical stores

Small entrepreneurs who dream of growing up face several challenges along the way, and this is natural. Today we are going to address the difficulty of conquering new walk-in customers daily and how this directly impacts small business growth.

You will also see a walk-in customer winning strategy in practice and its importance in the Marble and Granite PRO company’s success case. You probably still don’t know this concept, let alone how it works, but don’t worry, today you will.

We at Karis dream together with the small business and also serve several companies that are building their digital presence, but that only exists in the physical. So when you are in doubt or need help, contact us.

We want to teach your company to take off and stand out with excellence and good results. In today’s text, you will meet one of our customers and his main challenge: a physical store taking advantage of digital tools and how this helped in its growth.

Curious? Stay here with us and happy reading.

How to define the concept of walk-in customers

First, you need to understand the concept of customers who walk, or rather, those who “walk to the store”. We can define walk-in customers as customers that are looking for a physical store in order to buy anything. With the return of face-to-face services and the boosting of small businesses, we are once again noticing more and more consumer circulation.

Obviously, this “circulation” does not interfere with the rising digital commerce. However, we need to think about the physical stores that have not transformed or migrated to e-commerce, that is, that do not sell digitally. Companies like some of the ones we serve here at Karis, and for which we need to create and test strategies daily that are able to attract in-person customers to physical stores. We work with marketing strategies aimed at connecting stores, companies, and services to the persona of each of them.

Good old-fashioned word-of-mouth marketing

The old “word-of-mouth” marketing can be something quite traditional, but it is very important for all stores, including e-commerce.

In the past, we received an indication from someone about a particular store or service, today for digital marketing, this “word-of-mouth” is what we understand as social proof, that is, when someone indicates and approves a store or service for third parties. 

In e-commerce, for example, competition is much greater than in physical commerce, so it is essential that you include other strategies in addition to word-of-mouth marketing.

And when the store needs to “survive” physically? What should we do? We need to work on “word-of-mouth marketing”, without a doubt, and this alignment takes place within the marketing and sales sector, in addition to other strategies that strengthen digital presence (such as the use of social networks and paid campaigns).

This is what we will see next with the example of our client, and how he achieved good results with the arrival of new walk-in customers.

But, so far, what you need to know is: that word-of-mouth marketing, in the physical sphere, was the way of survival for many stores, but it alone is not enough, it is necessary to invest in the “2.0 version” of digital marketing. 

Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is indispensable for a physical store. In the case of Marble and Granite PRO, for example, it has achieved a good presence on Instagram, providing its target audience with enriched content that guides the world of natural stones and their domestic use. They provide an online catalog for interested leads and rely on primary service, that is, digitally, fully personalized.

The store also has a website and, through it, leads and customers also get a personalized and special service (according to the specific need of each person). It is Marble’s priority that the customer is able to locate the store’s physical address, phone number, and opening hours.

Many small entrepreneurs depend on digital marketing to develop, but it is necessary to pay attention to some issues such as page management needs to be carried out by a qualified professional; content marketing needs to be structured and analyzed by a content writer; it is necessary to align the target audience; inform the physical availability of the store, and do not ignore calls that do not are from your region, that is, those that only happen on digital.

Investing in digital is necessary, but without losing the essence

Some companies, when they need to migrate to digital, lose their essence, tradition, and personality. This loss can happen for several reasons, but the most serious is when they think the company does not meet or does not fit in the “digital market”. Many physical stores have been operating in the market for decades, and this essence needs to be inserted into your marketing strategy.

Get to know Google My Business

For many physical stores, the first step in winning over new walk-in customers is Google My Business. For those who still don’t know what it is and how it works, this tool created by the Google team over 10 years ago is free and allows walk-in customers to find your store easily. After all, many people can access the address through Google, check opening hours and follow the reviews.

Many consumers, to be quite exact, around 93%, search Google before making any purchase online. With the COVID-19 pandemic, the growth of purchases in the digital sector has doubled, which represents an immense challenge for physical stores. And how to stand out? Simple, you have to “dance to their music”, in this case, register on platforms like Google My Business and offer the service digital, but with an easily accessible physical space.

At Google My Business, you can manage your digital store and take it to Google Shopping, develop remarketing strategies and manage paid campaigns through Google Ads. In short, entering Google My Business is the first step for your physical store to gain space within the Google search engine.

And how will the walk-in customers get to the store? With Google My Business, you can enter your registered address on Google Maps, which makes it easier to use GPS. What’s more, with Google My Business, your store can be found by walk-in customers who are close to your address. This is because Google has a search engine that favors and considers the region where the user is searching.

Are you a small entrepreneur and still haven’t thought about using this tool and other mechanisms of the Google company? So you might be missing out on the most promising walk-in customers.

Build your online presence to attract walk-in customers

Get ready for new customers

It is essential that your store prepares for the new transformations after trying the Google My Business tool. And what are they? The first one is the arrival of new customers. It is important that your company has a trained, qualified sales team that provides the consumer with a good experience. Don’t forget, it will rate your store on Google right away.

Have selling power

Selling power is essential to make the walk-in customer come back and still spread your store wherever they go. And what are the requirements? Good service; a price appropriate to the market and better than the competition; ability to deliver a transformative and purposeful message; amazing promotions and discount coupons for upcoming purchases; service and assistance according to the specific need of each client.

Meet Marble and Granite PRO

Its origin and purpose

Marble and Granite PRO is a company founded by Brazilians in Peabody, Massachusetts. It has been present in the American market for over 18 years. They are specialists in the manufacture of countertops for kitchens and bathrooms, as well as fireplace cladding, using natural stones and quartz.

Marble is a company conceived by Patricia and her husband Ricélio, both Brazilian entrepreneurs. Patrícia arrived in the US at the age of 18 and brought with her the hope of finding a better life and developing financially within the North American market.

Ricélio, in turn, was already working on the old “Marble and Granite” when the first owner decided to sell it. Patricia and Ricélio bought the company, but faced great difficulties at the time, as did several small entrepreneurs. However, they turned around and, in 6 months, they had already paid off the debt for the purchase of the store.

The couple made the company develop, and invested in technology and in the marketing of the business. His last result was beyond expectations, that is, in an investment of USD750.00 in Google My Business, he generated a turnover of USD10k.

Like many small businesses, Marble and Granite PRO has had and still needs to deal with competition from the big companies and brands easily accessible by Google in the United States.

You must be wondering: what is the Marble differential? It invests in traffic strategies to make her walk-in customers grow. That is, it is essential that they have physical customers in their store. And to prove its quality and originality, Marble conquered space in Google, carried out and still carries out paid campaigns, and enriches and educates its target market with the production of content.

The proposal is for people who are passionate about ornamental stones to consider using them at home. And the couple’s dream is to double the number of sales and, consequently, their annual income. All this with the most important partnership: the walk-in customers.

Positive online presence and physical structure

Marble has a physical store structurally adapted to receive several customers and provides a catalog (in person and digital) of the available stones, in addition to working with a variety of tones, models, and styles of stones. We can say that the walk-in customer, when he arrives in the physical space of the store, has his expectation met and manages to solve his problem right away, that is, the pain of wanting a stone countertop or other product.

The biggest challenge: walk-in customers

The biggest challenge of the entrepreneur who does not have e-commerce is to win physical customers in his store. But it is totally possible to reconcile online presence, in-person sales, and quality. So, to win walk-in customers, Marble needs to compete for physical space with other stores, including malls where this niche is easily found.

Successful performance in traffic and results

Walk-in Customers and the current challenge of physical stores

As we can see in the image, in recent months, Marble has had an expressive growth within Google My Business with several customers and leads requesting routes. In fact, the number of requests for routes is higher than the number of accesses to the site. This shows how critical the Google My Business page is for connecting walk-in customers to the store.

walk-in customers and the current post-pandemic scenario

With the new consumption patterns, that is, those that came after the Covid-19 pandemic, we can expect a growth in digital media, a significant improvement in communication, customer appreciation (after all, the consumer is increasingly demanding), and a new consumerist behavior never seen before.

From the beginning of the pandemic until today, physical stores were the most affected, but many entrepreneurs are finding their breath and getting back to structure and, of course, trying to fit into this new reality. And we cannot forget that customers are slowly returning to consumption.

 We hope that your business, just like Marble, will achieve a lot of success cases and results.

Do you have any doubts? Contact us and find out what Karis and Digital Marketing can do for you today. Did you like this content? Then follow our blog and our socials to stay in the loop and get more and more informed.

See you soon.

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