Further to my post a couple of days ago about welcoming magazine readers in my newsagency, I have been thinking about businesses where the try before you buy approach is vital to their success:
- Car dealerships. Who buys a car without a test drive for a day or more.
- Clothing. They encourage you to try on shirts, suits, dresses – almost anything.
- Chocolates. Haighs drives sales with tastings – Darrell Lea stockists used to do this as well.
- Wine. Indie wine shops regularly offer tastings to drive sales.
- Book shops – online and offline. You can read before you buy.
- Music shops. You can listen to a CD (if you still buy CDs) before you buy.
- Cheese. Good retailers often offer tastings to drive sales.
- Toys. Toy shops have toys out for kids to play with to encourage sales.
- Paint. You can get sample cards and even tins to try a paint prior to purchase.
- Cards. People want to read the words and see images before they purchase.
- Body lotions. Stores like Aveda and L’Occitane give away samples to drive purchases.
- Hair. For wedding bookings you can often get a trial run for free or a discount.
- Coffee. Coffee shops let you smell their tasty brew to get you purchasing.
Another version of try before you buy is the money back guarantee where you can get a product at home and use it and then return for a refund if it’s not what you want.
Opening your doors to a shop where products are on the shelves and not locked away is an invitation for customers to interact with what you sell. This is what our newsagency businesses are and should be like.
The browsing experience in a newsagency is different to supermarkets, convenience stores and petrol outlets. We ought to embrace this rather than shutting it down.