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What is easier to increase for retailers: sales or foot traffic?

As retailers are well aware, foot traffic is a key factor for any successful brick-and-mortar location. And increasing foot traffic to your physical store is a constant struggle. Please suggest what is easier to increase, sales or foot traffic?

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We saw in the 1990s .com bust that increasing "eyes", Internet foot traffic, did not bring increased sales. I worked on the management side of specialty retail chains (chains in operational breakdowns) and saw first hand how vital it is to induce potential customers into the store, not to just walk by. The public needs to see a reason to alter their movement and enter a store. It is just as important to keep the customers and potential customers informed of reasons to go to that store as a destination other than hoping for foot traffic. Access, the attractiveness of the front entrance, and interesting and needed items are the key. Don't look generic!

Thanks for your response Alex.


I agree that increasing foot traffic for retailers can be a challenge. Especially if your brick-and-mortar location is off the beaten path and customers have to go out of their way to get to your store.

Increasing sales is easier to tackle if you have an online presence. Then within your online promotion, you can use sales techniques to get customers to visit your store.

1. Do you offer free pick up at the store? Customers may be more inclined to purchase if they know they can order ahead online and skip the shipping costs if they pick up their items in the store. Now the retailer has the opportunity to sell to the customer again in person on products that complement the original purchase.

2. For retailers, I wouldn't assume your customers even know that you have a physical location. Be sure to include your business address in a prominent place for your customers to see on your emails, website, advertisements, or other marketing materials like flyers.

3. Advertise "In-Store Only" sales to your customers. Give your customers a reason to travel to your retail location for an extra percentage off the sale price that they wouldn't receive buying online.

Here are some additional Business.com resources for boosting your retail sales:


Hope this helps!

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