Retail sales around the world reached $26 trillion in 2021. And by 2025, this number is set to grow to as much as $31.3 trillion. That means that despite the growing influence of eCommerce, traditional retail businesses will continue to play an important role in the retail market for the foreseeable future.
However, with some of the prevalent challenges that have been present in the industry for a while now, forward-thinking retail companies must be on the lookout for ways to expand and prevent stagnation. And the good news is, there are innovative strategies you can use to set your company up for success in the long-term future.
To help you get on track for growth and beyond, let’s look at some of the best expansion ideas retail companies should consider.
How to Grow Your Retail Business
Streamline Your Value Chain
Even though the term value chain isn’t that well known right now, it’s already disrupting how retail businesses operate and organize their processes. Developed by Michael E. Porter, the retail value chain is a way to look at your company’s areas of operation both as a whole and individually, identifying opportunities to make impactful improvements.
With the retail value chain method, you would analyze all of the primary activities involved in product ideation, physical creation, maintenance, sales, and support. These processes can include logistics, manufacturing, sales and marketing, customer services, and almost anything else that could be related to how your products go from their initial conception to being sold to customers.
Unlike a traditional supply chain, the value chain is based on looking at your commodities in terms of the value they can offer to the customer. That way, you can optimize each step of your chain to ensure that it offers the maximum value for your customers. It will also enable you to determine inefficient areas that need improvement, optimize operations, and recognize the primary opportunities for growth. When looking to streamline your supply chain, it’s worth knowing important questions such as what is kitting? By having a greater understanding of your value chain, you’ll have a clearer overall knowledge of how to improve and grow your business.
Connect With Your Target Audience
Whether you operate online or sell primarily in a physical store, the main driver of your success will always be the people who choose to buy from you. In fact, having an understanding of your customer’s needs and wants is usually the main factor that determines whether a company can withstand changes in the marketplace and thrive over the long term.
To accomplish that, you need to have a way to maintain contact with the people you want to cater to. Only by having conversations with your customers and prospects can you discover what they like about your brand, what they want to see improved, and the reasons they choose to work with you over the competition.
Collecting relevant information will allow you to make adjustments to your product selection, improve your messaging, and develop effective marketing campaigns that resonate with your target buyers and give you a stronger USP you can leverage against the competition.
And that, in turn, will make it possible to identify new opportunities for growth and expansion. Whether you introduce new products, cater to a new segment of your market, or find ways to outmatch the competition, your customers will always remain the best resource for coming up with new ways to advance.
Grow Your Social Media Presence
It’s impossible to deny the importance social media has come to play in all retail markets. It’s not just a key method for staying in touch with your audience but also a way to drive sales virtually on demand.
When you develop a social media strategy that your audience responds to, that gives you access to billions of social media users across various platforms. What’s more, when you utilize platforms like Instagram and Tik Tok, you gain the perfect medium for showcasing your products in an appealing and engaging way.
Finally, with the help of social media, you can build stronger relationships with your audience that translate into increased brand loyalty. By interacting with your customers on a platform they frequent and like, you can use your brand voice to keep them coming back for your content, which can include promotions, new product launches, and anything else that can help you drive sales and increase the customer lifetime value.
For retail brands that want to succeed in the long term, finding new ways to grow and expand is essential. But even though the business landscape is changing rapidly, the methods for growth have remained fairly consistent.
At the most basic level, identifying new opportunities for expansion and growth will come down to optimizing your processes to improve the customer experience and talking to your audience directly, which allows learning what they want and how to cater to their needs better than the competition.