Sunday 7 September 2014

The Best Way To Get More Customers At QVM

If you ask traders what needs to be done to reverse sales decline at QVM, 9 out of 10 will say "just bring us more customers". It is a simplistic response with an obvious truth because more customers means more sales, means viable business. Traders talk about dragging customers to our market, not in so many words, but paying tourist buses to come here or spending thousands of dollars on media advertising has elements of "dragging" about it.

The problem is that customer attendance needs to be sustainable. If customers are dragged here, but don't like what they see, then the expenditure is wasted. We know that consumers have become very choosey and our relevance as a public market in a global retail environment is under question (as it is for all retailers). Let's get one thing straight - most of our existing customers love us. As one of our long term traders said this week "I still have the most wonderful engaging experience with my customers. But there are just not enough of them, and sadly, many in my circle of friends don't see QVM as an attractive shopping choice".

And here is the point of this article - if customers don't see us an attractive alternative to other forms of shopping, we will not address sales decline. We need to be seen as an irresistible destination that is relevant to consumers. Rather than attempt to drag people here they must want to come because of what we offer.

There is another major factor that impacts on our business and we go back to our long term trader who put it quite succinctly. "By the time today's customers have paid their mortgage, their power bills, and their mobile phone bills, there is not a lot left for discretionary spending. They have enough left to buy a cup of coffee and perhaps take the family out for a cheap lunch". Things have changed. Discretionary spending has declined and Australians are putting more into savings. We now need many more people to come past our stalls to generate the same income. Perhaps the push for more food, more seating areas, and more entertainment makes some sense if we are to attract bigger crowds.

So, we need to attract a lot more people to our market and we need to entertain them in a way that will make them want to come back again and again. That is a major task and fortunately we have a major renewal project to help get it right. In that sense the future is bright.

08/09/2014 10:03:48 customers "Why would customers want to waste time in a dirty untidy environment poor  facilities not even hot water in toilets most days  huge empty spaces  we need a visually stimulating environment if we don't have that customers will go elsewhere. It all starts with cleanliness   and visual appeal    How hard can that be?

Huge open  empty spaces  do nothing for the image" A & J   E Shed