There is a new problem for retailers these days, it's called, showrooming. According to the Wall Street Journal's article, “Can Retailers Halt 'Showrooming', their definition of this term is, “shoppers who scope out merchandise in stores but buy on rivals' websites, usually at a lower price. As stated in the article, “Today half of shoppers who buy products online first checked them out in a traditional store, according to a recent study of 900 shoppers by Minneapolis-based research firm ClickIQ Inc. While the majority of survey respondents favored Target and Wal-Mart stores for researching merchandise, half of the online consumers wound up making their purchases on Amazon.” So the problem many retailers are facing is trying to keep their customers from going to cheaper online alternatives. Many retailers are starting to scrounge for new ideas, some are dropping the price of their online stores 1% to 2%, others are trying to work with their suppliers to make their products exclusive to their stores, and a few are encouraging clerks to refer shoppers to their online stores when they cannot find the item. Using this article managers may now understand why they seem to be losing profits in their stores. So the next step for the managers would be to figure out why shoppers are not buying from them. As a manager, I would take a look at our prices compared to the online stores and figure out some incentives to keep our customers. I would start with coupons, rebates, and price matching programs. I would push to make our items more exclusive to our stores, and for the online shoppers, offer free basic shipping and more online deals and selections. I would push for ways to make shopping more enjoyable in the store with exceptional customer service, a knowledgable sales staff, next day store pickup for out of stock items, and a clean and friendly shopping environment.
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