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LS Retail | 14 September 2015

Want to get more customers in your store? Open a restaurant

Want to get more customers in your store? Open a restaurant
Among the trends, which are currently shaping the retail sector, is the rise of retail/hospitality mash-ups. Shopping from home has become easier than ever before. People shop from their mobiles, tablets and computers at any hour of the day. The items they buy are then delivered straight to their houses – often for free, and increasingly just in a few hours’ time. With a high variety of items accessible from the comfort of the living room, it takes more than a good product selection to attract customers to the physical stores.

Shop and dine

Retailers are adapting, adding areas with restaurants or cafes to their stores to lure more customers through the doors and to try to keep them inside as long as possible. This way, stores are offering customers something that they cannot get from the other shopping channels: real-life experiences and good memories. This strategy has become popular across many verticals and budgets.
  • Luxury goods brands like Ralph Lauren and Alfred Dunhill have opened stylish bars and restaurants inside their fashion stores.
  • Ikea, the furniture retailer, runs a successful chain of Swedish restaurants inside its stores.
  • Grocery stores – from large chains like WholeFoods to the neighborhood grocer – have started offering in-store dining, thus becoming a one-stop food option for busy consumers who save time by eating and shopping in the same location.
Other brands have sought creative partnerships to shape special experiences for their customers: Uniqlo, the casualwear brand, has joined forces with both Starbucks cafés and the Museum of Modern Arts. Customers can now browse Uniqlo clothes while sipping a hot drink and enjoying a work of art.

More verticals = more challenges, but also more opportunities

Retail / restaurant combos have helped retailers get customers back through their doors. Managing both retail and hospitality under the same roof is, however, not easy. To begin with, retailers need a versatile management system that can handle different verticals, in order to avoid inconsistent financials data – a system like LS Nav. It is not, however, only a matter of technical complexities. Download our new, free whitepaper, “The six secrets of successful multi-vertical companies”, to learn about the challenges retailers face when trying to integrate hospitality in their business – and how these challenges can be overcome. Make sure to drop us a line if you wish know more about LS Retail products.