According to research, there are over 30,000 resale (consignment, buy outright and thrift) stores in the US. That adds up to a lot of resale competition. As resale becomes more mainstream, so does the possibility of new shops opening near you. Are you prepared to take on your competitors? Follow these steps. It’s time to take your resale competition head on.
Study the strategies of your competition. Here’s a sample of a Competitive Analysis. Look closely at how they respond to shoppers. Objectively view the look of their store. Pay close attention to the quality of their merchandise. Keep samples of their marketing. Read all of their reviews and keep a calendar of their annual marketing plan.
List the strengths and weaknesses of your competition. Improve on their strengths. Exploit their weaknesses. Your goal is to be so successful in the resale industry that others will think twice before entering your market. Use Secret Shoppers; sign up on their mailing lists and regularly take note of any changes in inventory, marketing, staff, etc.
In studying your resale competition, don’t forget retail. Remember, you’re competing for the same spending dollars as everyone else. Capitalize on your differences. If your resale competition happens to be a large retail chain, market your intimacy and personal service. Focus on the Shop Small / Shop Local message. If you’re in direct competition with another resale shop, find your niche that separates the two of you. If you sell the exact same merchandise, become the expert. Teach classes and educate your staff. Ask yourself, “Why would a shopper choose me over the other guy?”
Take time to do online searches of similar resale/consignment shops across the nation. Examine their websites and social media. Now, you can view what ads are being promoted on Facebook by your resale competition. Just look at “Info and Ads” on their Facebook page. It’s Facebook’s way of being more transparent. You can also easily do a google search of “furniture (women’s clothing, sporting equipment, etc.) consignment stores in ….” Glean ideas from other shops that would appeal to your customers. Remember to modify their marketing to fit your demographic.
Don’t be afraid of the online sales hype. Consumers still, primarily, want to touch and feel the merchandise. Although upcoming generations are more familiar with online sales, your biggest resale competition is still brick and mortar shops near you. Moving to increased online sales should be a future goal, but for now, your shoppers still want the experience of visiting your store. Make it a memorable one (in a positive way).
Read Don’t be terrified of the dreaded Consignment Competition for more information.