Specialty retailers have Local Power. With stores located in or near the consumer's community, specialty retailers are able to provide a unique experience built on convenience and value-added services. Advice, touch and feel, fitting, installation, repair, warranty and returns are just a few of the services that help ensure success both pre- and post-purchase.
PROBLEM: Brand Power and Local Power are Disconnected
Brand Power and Local Power, complementary strengths indeed, but how well have they been working together? What happens when a consumer gets excited about a product at a brand's website and wants to make a purchase or see it in person? Some current scenarios are:
Traditional Dealer Locator - Brand provides a list of local retailers with no information on product availability. The consumer has to call around or search each retailer's website looking for the product they want, an often disappointing and frustrating experience that can kill desire, or worse, drive consumers to an easier option like Amazon where they'll get introduced to other brands.
Big Hitter Links - Brand provides buy now links to a few online retailers. This no doubt helps a few retailers, but how well is the consumer, and ultimately, the brand served? These few retailers don't have locations near most consumers. They can't provide the unique pre- and post-purchase services of a local store. They can't provide immediate gratification with same-day pickup (like Amazon is trying to implement). They can't cultivate the same kind of personal relationship with a consumer that earns a local retailer a lifetime of repeat purchases and referrals.
Consumer Direct - Brand sells direct to consumer. In a straightforward model, this takes much needed profit away from specialty retailers. In a revenue sharing model, retailers get a piece of the revenue (short-term profit), but again, how well is the consumer and brand served? The same shortcomings of Big Hitter Links apply and retailers are not able to cultivate a relationship with the consumer (long-term loss).
Consumer Direct - Retailer Fulfilled - Brand sells direct through platform that lets retailers claim and fulfill orders. Here again the consumer loses access to all the pre-purchase benefits of a local specialty retailer and a relationship gets established during the sale with the brand, not the retailer.
Buy Local Now bridges the benefits of specialty brands and retailers to provide consumers with a rich, seamless experience rivaling any competitor or channel. It lets brands stay focused on building great products and driving demand. It lets retailers stay focused on building lifelong consumer relationships through convenient locations and value-added services.
Here's how it works...
Buy Local Now is a non-exclusive solution available to all specialty brands and retailers. The service is provided by SmartEtailing and it will list every specialty retailer even if they don't have a SmartEtailing website (some functionality may be limited due to lack of data).
Specialty Retailers - Check the Buy Local Now store location lookup to confirm the accuracy of your store locations. Buy Local Now makes it easy to manage your store details and brands in one central location.
SmartEtailing clients can self-manage store locations and brands from the backend of your website as well as configure optional point of sale and supplier inventory integration services.
Non-SmartEtailing clients can register for a free Buy Local Now account to self manage as well as elect to use optional for fee services that integrate your point of sale and preferred suppliers inventory.
Specialty Brands - Contact SmartEtailing to learn how you can join the growing list of brands using Buy Local Now.