Nothing accelerates a business quite like a plan. 

Of course, we know it’s easier said than done. However, stepping out of the daily details and finding the mental space to assess where things are at, where they need to be, and how to get there is the difference between spinning or scrambling. And, of course, we want you spinning smoothly and effortless into 2022. 

So, as the extended silly season comes to a close and we all come up for air, here are five New Year Retailer Resolutions designed to help enhance your business.

Review your data. 

We like starting with this one as it really is the best hygiene check for your business. 

You can use data as a beacon of truth; it won’t lie, nor will it sugarcoat the facts. Once you know the right questions to ask, data helps spotlight the answer. Here’s a quick and basic example: 

Let’s say you’re investing a significant amount in Google PPC. You’re bidding on the search term Kids Bicycle Helmets. It’s costing you a fair amount per bid, and you don’t see huge results. But there’s more…. It turns out you’ve worked hard to develop a unique product listing for several of your kids’ bicycle helmets, and they rank well organically. The data shows you that not only is your spend not working well; you probably should not be spending on that search term at all. Instead, you should be looking to continue to optimise those pages organically. 

The big thing with data is that you need to go into it, ask the right questions and extract the best insights. Otherwise, this can be an overwhelming activity that creates more confusion than clarity. 

Did we mention our Seller Success Team is full of numbers nerds? We love to crunch data, and we’re here to help you review. Why not book a time with us to run some reports and see what can be found? 

Differentiate your product listings. 

We mentioned those great kids’ bicycle helmet product listings, which hinted at this next tip; differentiation. 

Yes, creating product listings through API integrations with your ePos is quick and effortless. However, it’s what you then do with those listings that has the potential to make you a lot more money. Trust us – this is an investment in time that will deliver rewards. Let’s say there’s a famous mall in your city known to be the world of bikes. It’s where everyone goes to find what they’re after. Store after store is lined up in this mall, many selling the same products at the same prices. Where will the shopper go if there is no point of difference, no lure? Heads or tails. 

Take this scenario online, and you have, of course, an online marketplace. Customer behaviour doesn’t change – they’re still looking for something to make purchase A more compelling than purchase B. So, enhancing your product listings can make all the difference. We’ve got a great article about how to create the best product listings, but in a nutshell, you need to consider ideas such as: 

  • Original in-situ images as well as the catalogue offering from the manufacturer;
  • Video content – a review of the bike by your top sales manager or a brilliant local rider with plenty of credibility and/or strong social media following; 
  • Information displayed in snapshot summary for those who are short on time and concentration;
  • In addition to the above, however, provide detailed information for those who want to pour over the tech;
  • Reviews from delighted customers; 
  • Catchy introductions rather than the stock-standard catalogue entry; 
  • Any additional benefits your store can offer by way of boosted warranty, free servicing for X time, added value (buy this and get…). 

If you’re not entirely sure how to get the best out of your product listings, or you’re just not feeling the love, contact your Seller Success team. We’re here to help, and we’ve got all the tricks of the trade to fire things up and help you optimise those listings! 

Curate a bank of quality social content. 

A great idea for starting the New Year right is to build a bank of social content; images, videos, memes and creative that you can call upon throughout the year. 

This is especially useful during busy periods when you need to maintain communications, but the reality is you’re flat out in the workshop or on the floor. So, if you’ve got any downtime now, get creative and start curating. 

What does this look like? 

  • Get the bikes out with the local lads and lasses and start shooting and filming;
  • Grab pieces to camera about who likes what and why and how their life is so much better now they’re on this bike;
  • If any stock is not performing so well, or has a lacklustre product listing, pimp it with pictures;
  • Do something quirky, fun, eye-catching with the product, shoot it and get it out there. 

Move all this content into one folder, so it’s straightforward to find. Ideally, you want to compress and appropriately name everything, so it’s ready to roll the moment you want to use it. 

Harness the power of social media. 

One of the best channels for using all that quality curated content is social media

So, how’s your social campaign going? 

The best approach here is not to get overwhelmed and try to plan out the entire year. Instead, take this one quarter at a time, and divide it into your various channels. Before you start thinking about the year ahead, conduct a bit of reconnaissance. See what competitors are doing. Jump into other territories and assess how influential bike stores elsewhere are kicking goals online. Keep these insights in mind. When you build out your social media plan, it’s essential to anchor back to what makes you different, why customers love you, what you can offer. Returning to these messages helps to reinforce your unique selling points and set you apart from the pack. 

Your Seller Success team is absolutely gunning to help you in this department. We never stop thinking about social so why not contact us today and let’s talk about how we can help you develop your campaign. 

Host a community event. 

Starting the New Year with a community event is not only good for the soul, it sets you up for a cracking year with your customers. 

The first thing to ask yourself is, who do you want to help and why? Is there a young cycling talent in the area who needs money to fund racing for the year ahead? Is a mental health group running biking sessions with clients? Do you simply want to thank your loyal customers for 2021 and celebrate a new year with them? Whatever the reason, you have all the tools in the kit that will enable a great event: 

  • Venue. 
  • Database of invitees. 
  • Windowfront and possible sidewalk board (for additional free marketing). 
  • Kitchen out the back (or possibly a cafe out the front) to make catering easy. 

What else can you consider to make the most of this event? 

  • Cross promotions with other local businesses. Maybe for a lucky door prize? To offset the cost of catering? To raffle and raise funds for a charity? To help attract the right people to this event? Approach those in your area with an opportunity to get involved. Think local brewer, hair salon, travel agent, nutritionist, physio, etc;
  • Make your products centre-stage. How can you ensure plenty of eyeballs on your products during this event? Perhaps style them in a way that is fun and unique to the activity. If the event is at night, think about spotlighting. Can you demo anything whilst people are mingling?;
  • Have someone on hand to take plenty of photos/ videos (remember those earlier points about curating content and creating a social media plan) so that you can make the most of this event well and truly after it’s come to a close;
  • Consider marketing. Have you done everything you can to spread the word about this? Does your Seller Success team know so they can help bounce ideas around with you and potentially contribute to the exposure? 

Can BikeExchange help with your New Year plans? 

OK, with these five New Year Retailer Resolution tips, you’re off to a cracking start!

Why not contact us and let us know your plans? We’d love to hear about them and see where we might be able to help. Top tips aside, we wish you and yours some restful time out and every success this year! We look forward to catching up with you soon but in the meantime, Happy New Year!