If we were all the same, chances are the world would be a pretty boring place. However, that’s not the case and in the world of retail, you’re likely to encounter many different types of customers.
Understanding your customer types can help you learn how to handle them all individually and ensure a more productive conversion from window-shoppers to paying customers. Handling your various customer types is important because a one-size-fits-all approach is not always the most successful way of boosting your business revenue.
The 11 types of customers in retail
So what types of customers will you expect to encounter in retail? Whilst some of these customers are typical of all retail establishments, you may encounter one or two that are fairly unique. However, there’s always a way of converting them, no matter how challenging it might be.
- Regular customers
Regular customers are those that are actively purchasing your products or services. You may not think they need much in the way of converting but they can easily sway their opinion on a brand if the customer experience is no longer there.
According to Accenture, 48% of consumers have left a website without purchasing because they felt it was poorly curated for them. That means effort still needs to be made for your regulars.
How to convert – In order to continue their loyalty to your brand, make sure that you spend a lot of effort on customer service and tailoring the experience to them by taking note of previous purchases and making using of communications on email marketing and social media.
- Well-informed shoppers
Well-informed shoppers are the ones who have done their research and therefore are likely to ask very few questions if any, whether that’s online or in-store. However, simply having more knowledge doesn’t mean they won’t go elsewhere. In fact, if they know the retail market well, then they might be aware of getting better services elsewhere.
How to convert – When it comes to these shoppers, convincing them that you’re the best of the bunch is key. That means showing off customer testimonials or reviews and producing content that shows comparisons to other brands that you’re in competition with. With that being said, make sure you’re always communicating the message that your retail brand is the best.
- The showroomers
Showroomers are the traditional shopper of wanting to try on something in-store and then looking online for a better price. This can prove challenging, especially if there mind is setting on not parting with their money when they’re in your store.
How to convert – The best way of converting a showroomer is to shift their attention to value, rather than the price. Emphasise the ease of taking home the product right there and then, rather than ordering online and waiting for it to arrive. With shopping in-store, you get it there and then.
- Impulsive customer
The impulsive customer is one that is great when they actually do spend their money but they might not always follow through. So even though impulsive could mean there’s very little required form you, it’s still important to give them a nudge in the right direction.
How to convert – With the impulsive, it’s good to deliver quick service, highlight those key selling points and make checking out as easy as possible.
- The wanderer
The wanderer, whether in-store or online can be one of the most painful because they’re not always going to buy. Otherwise known as window-shoppers they’re not always impulsive customers, although you can get a mixture of the two in some.
How to convert – When looking at how to improve customer experience in ecommerce, knowing how to convert the wanderer is beneficial. Don’t push them and instead, ask questions that don’t relate to anything in particular. Keep it broad and then make recommendations without any pressure behind it.
- Customers on a mission
Customers on a mission are ones that are similar to the impulsive and researcher. They know what they want and they’re going in to get it. However, they may only be wanting that and if they had an idea of what they want and it doesn’t transpire to be accurate, they’ll go elsewhere.
How to convert – For customers on a mission, it’s good to stand aside and to not get in their way. If anything, you want to make the shopping process simple, just like the indecisive shopper.
- Indecisive shoppers
Talking of indecisive shoppers, these customers can be a tough one to crack, especially as 23% of online shopping carts are abandoned on average. With that being said, indecisive customers can get easily overwhelmed.
How to convert – To convert an indecisive shoper, it’s important to know their needs in-store. For those online, make their shopping experience easier with filters and tabs specific to what they might be after.
- Your competitor’s customer
The golden goose of the customer types is your own competitor’s customer who has come to your brand to see what’s available. This is a perfect opportunity to steal your competition’s customers if it’s done correctly.
How to convert – Knowing what your competition is offering is key because that will help you spot what the customer is missing or might be swayed by, whether that’s quality of product, the styles available or the pricing.
- Bargain hunters
There’s likely to be a bit of bargain hunter in every customer because who doesn’t want to get value for money? With that being said, providing the best value possible is important in your retail establishment.
How to convert – For a bargain hunter, try and make them feel like they’re getting a good deal. Sell them on the value, rather than focusing too much on price like you’d do with a showroomer.
- Chatty customers
Chatty customers, particularly those in-store will chew your ears off and it’s often because they just like to have a conversation. You can entertain it to a certain degree but after a while, it starts to waste time.
How to convert – If you encounter a chatter customer, take the time to show geinune intereest and then center the conversation on what they’re looking to purchase at your retailer.
- The difficult ones
Difficult ones are the hardest because they’ll often have a vendetta from the get-go. It is doable though and it’s all about the calm approach.
How to convert – Approach with caution and where you can, go above their expectations where possible. Try and handle to problem away from public eye but also be seen to address it if it’s already out in the public domain aka, on your social media platforms.
How would you handle other types of customers?
The types of customer in retail can vary greatly so it’s important to be aware of as many customer types as possible. What would you do if you came across a customer type not on this list or was entirely unique to you?
Knowing the different types of customers in retail and how to deal with them is key for boosting sales and converting those customer types into the one you want most – the regular shoppers!