The American Pet Products Association (APPA) estimates that the pet industry’s revenue in the US was at $95.7 billion in 2019. 2020’s environment has boosted sales yet again as many turn to pets now more than ever.
This may be attributed to the rise of people that consider pets as part of their family. Many dogs and cats are well-loved. They get access to premium food, toys, and customized clothes. Hence, there’s a thriving pet industry and more pet stores in local communities.
While aspiring entrepreneurs can easily set up their brick and mortar store, how can they attract customers? How can they gain popularity in their local community?
Getting the attention of pet owners is easy once you know the right tips and tricks. To help you get started, we’ve compiled some of the basic ways that you can get started.
- Post Content in Social Media
Social media provides pet stores with the ideal platform to grow their business.
In fact, 73% of marketers believe that social media marketing is an effective means to grow their business. Additionally, 71% of consumers who had a positive experience with a brand on social media were likely to recommend it to their friends and family too.
Not surprisingly, most pet owners follow profiles and pages that are relevant to their furry friends. This is how they learn about new products and trends that can benefit the animals under their care.
As a result, Mungo & Maud – a pet accessories shop – has Instagram posts featuring pets using their products like this Olive Cable Cashmere Pullover.
Other pet owners use social media to find entertaining pet videos and memes. They stop and stare at posts that incite laughs or smiles. So, social media content is one way your business can get on people’s radar.
For example, Barkbox’s Instagram account features funny memes that are relatable for pet owners. This post alone generated more than 3,000 likes. Imagine the number of potential leads that your business can get with a single post.
Brick and mortar stores can forge relationships in their community to gain customers.
Get involved in the community. Participate in local events and showcase your products. This lets locals learn the value of your business.
Helping your neighbors and giving donations can catch people’s attention too. So, donate your time to initiatives that matter like pet rescues, gardening events, and charities.
While you aren’t directly growing your sales, the network and connections you gain will help your business grow.
- Start a Pet Blog
Blogs are an effective way to generate traffic to your online or brick and mortar store.
OptinMonster found that businesses with blogs get twice as much traffic as those who don’t. Also, blogs were perceived as the 5th most trustworthy source for collecting online information.
While these statistics are benefits of blogging in general, there’s a lot of niche benefits for pet stores too. Pet owners love to read-up on ways that they can better care for their pets. They want to hear advice and hear about the experiences of others.
Having said that, a blog can help pet stores build a loyal following online, as well as in their local community. After all, people flock to websites with blogs that have something relevant to say.
For example, Chewy – a pet store selling pet food – has a blog about pet parenting, pet supplies, and health. This attracts people that want to learn about how to care for their cats or dogs, from experts that are knowledgeable about the process.
- Create a Referral Program
Referral programs can help pet stores generate word-of-mouth.
In fact, ReferralCandy found that 92% of consumers trust recommendations from people they know. Additionally, people pay 2x more attention to recommendations from friends because they’re the ones that they trust the most.
Not surprisingly, product recommendations and consumer experiences make their way into everyday conversations. When we have a positive customer experience, we’ll talk about it with our friends and family too.
Word-of-mouth usually happens by chance, but there are some ways you can facilitate the process. A referral program that rewards loyal customers with discounts and freebies is one way you can promote your business.
For example, Scratch – a pet food store – has a refer-a-friend program. It lets brand advocates share a $20 discount to a friend and get a $10 credit in return when their friends join.
- Create a Rewards Program
How to make customers more loyal? Pet care loyalty programs will reward loyal customers for continuously buying toys and foods for their furry friends.
While these rewards can cost your business, you can gain more profits in the long-run by making customers more loyal.
Invespcro reports that loyal customers are worth up to 10x as much as their first purchase. Plus, 83% of customers believed that loyalty programs make them likely to continue doing business with certain businesses.
Increasing customer retention should be a priority for online and brick & mortar stores. It’s a lot easier to upsell your products to customers that already have experience with your brand, as opposed to getting new customers which need to be led along the sales funnel.
Petco – a pet supplies shop – has a Pals rewards program. This lets brand advocates enjoy simple benefits like free shipping, free birthday gifts and collect points to earn cash rewards.
A good tip is to create a tiered rewards system. Give an exclusive product or discount to customers that accumulate a specific number of points. This motivates customers to continue purchasing from your store.
- Use Email Marketing
Use email marketing campaigns to engage with customers.
Backlinko reports that consumers check personal emails for an average of 2.5 hours each weekday while at work. Plus, 42.3% of Americans subscribe to email lists to receive savings and discounts.
This means email marketing lets businesses stay on the back of their customer’s minds. You can send a monthly newsletter featuring the latest products or new services. If there’s a holiday or event, then you can use emails to send coupons and discounts.
Chewy—a pet food store—sends 14 emails per month. In the email below, they have a well-designed promo for their upcoming sale which has up to 30% off deals.
Marketing your pet store is easy once you know the right tips and tricks. Create a referral program or loyalty program that rewards your brand advocates for sharing with their friends and consistently making more purchases.
Post entertaining content in social media that pique the interest of potential customers. You can take it to the next level by posting funny memes, product photos, and relatable content. Alternatively, you can start a pet blog and post informative tips or tricks.
Get to know people in your community to generate publicity for your brick and mortar stores. Contributing to charities and participating in events can generate word-of-mouth endorsements for your business.
These marketing techniques may seem simple, but they can lead to significant returns for your online pet store.
How will you promote your brick and mortar store? Got any tips for marketing pet stores? Let us know, email us on Sleeknote.
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