Bobby Arora, Director, Status Quo
“We wait for customers to come into our stores. At this moment it is important for every offline retailer to reach out to their customers and tell them about the new products they have started selling. They need to tempt and bring their customers to buy their product and when they buy they will obviously come in and buy more products. Sometimes even though we do not want to buy online but the continuous rotation of ads tempt us to buy the product but this doesn’t happen offline. In today’s situation retailers will have to adopt this approach of showing customers the products they need as it could be they are delaying the purchase of these products.”
Masks have become more of a necessity than a fashion accessory in COVID-19 era. “It has become very important to wear masks before stepping out of homes, people are stocking around six to eight types of masks to match their outfits,” observed Bobby Arora, Director, Status Quo at #3 webinar organized by DFU Publications-DFU LIVE on May 30 on the topic: ‘New Categories Dikhao, Sales Badhao’ (Emerging New Categories for Apparel Retailers, Post-Covid). Arora said, “Today, no one can step out of their homes without wearing a mask though they are not very comfortable. However, as long as current restrictions prevail, everyone will have to wear them.”
Currently, there is a huge shortage of surgical masks in India. “It’s important to secure these masks for our health workers and people involved in treating COVID-19 patients. These masks are not reusable and need to be disposed off after each use. On the other hand, cloth masks are washable hence reusable,” Arora explained.
Better communication to facilitate sales
According to Arora, as masks have high demand, it is important for retailers to keep customers updated on their stocks and sales. “Retailers need to inform their customers about the category of masks they are selling,” he said. Noting there are very few customers for masks in the market, Arora said, “There is a tendency amongst consumers to delay mask purchase. E-commerce companies keep complete track of consumers’ choice of masks and their preferred price points. However, offline companies fail to achieve this. They wait for customers to come to their stores whereas they need to reach out and enlighten consumers about their new products and how they can be bought online.”
Arora pointed out though some consumers do not prefer to buy products online, they are tempted by the continuous advertisement of a product on social media channels. “However, this is not the case with offline retailers who need to emphasize the importance to their customers,” he added. Though masks may not bring in significant revenues for retailers, they are a value-driven and inexpensive product to stock. “Masks enable retailers to reach out to their customers in their times of need. In turn, this will increase customer loyalty towards them not just for masks but also other products,” Arora summed up.