“The Omicron variant of COVID-19 is now, according to several accounts, the fastest spreading virus in history with over one million cases as of January 3 in the U.S.”

Learn 9 Lessons The Pandemic Taught Us

“The Omicron variant of COVID-19 is now, according to several accounts, the fastest spreading virus in history with over one million cases as of January 3 in the U.S.”

Learn 9 Lessons The Pandemic Taught Us

According to George Anderson, Editor-in-Chief of RetailWire and “threatens to mess retail up”.

In his article, Anderson points out that complicating factors such as a lack of personnel and people dismissive of the public health threat, make it more difficult for businesses to address the current challenge and are potentially creating a scenario that may prolong the pandemic.

With a labor shortage in the U.S, the lack of front-line workers means retail leaders must work even harder to make sure their staff are scheduled and focused when the shoppers are in their stores.

How to manage all of this when you have hundreds of staff to juggle? How do you make sure you have staff available to serve customers at the precise hours when they are in your store?

There are 4 key question to help you get every sale you can amidst Omicron and staff shortages. How many can you answer?

1. Do you know when shoppers are coming in each one of your stores, down to the hour of every day?

  • If you don’t know that you are working blindly or, worse, you’re scheduling staff when sales are high. That is just a self-fulfilling prophecy.
  • If you don’t know how many shoppers are in your store, it’s worth exploring how retail traffic counters could transform your staffing plans.
  • Not sure where to start? Ask us about retail traffic counters – that is what you need to get started. Our team at HeadCount has evaluated and installed store traffic counters for nearly 20 years and, since we don’t manufacture our own, we are objective about how to assess which traffic counter would work best for you.

2. Do you know which hours your conversion rates are sagging – especially the hours when shoppers are standing right in your stores? Do you know how this changes every day?

  • Your sagging conversion rates tell you exactly when you are losing your sales right down to the hour in each store. But if you don’t have accurate counts of your shopper traffic, you can’t calculate conversion rates. You absolutely cannot use sales transactions to get you this information. You need traffic.
  • It’s easy to say staff more during your busiest shopping hours. But who has more labor available? There’s a good chance that the amount of labor isn’t even the problem.
  • With a shortage of experienced staff, it’s even more important to be able to help your store teams troubleshoot their lost opportunities and solve barriers to sales. To do that, you need to be able to pinpoint precisely when you lost conversion.
  • Imagine if you could ask your store team a specific question like “What was going on between 2-4 yesterday” instead of a general inquiry about “Why were sales down?”. Your precise question will help staff to pinpoint problems they can solve the next day.

Capture every sale you can.

Find out how we can help you and your teams understand your business by looking through the powerful lens of traffic data – the data of opportunity.

Book A Call With One Of Our Experts
Learn 9 Lessons The Pandemic Taught Us

3. Do you know which stores have the most traffic? Which stores are losing out on sales and may need your help?

  • Can you answer this question in just 5 minutes at the start of your day? If not, you are probably struggling to figure out where you should be spending your limited amount of time every day helping your field teams.

  • Which stores appear to be compromising customer service by losing out on conversion or average sales price?

4. When are your stores going to be busiest in the upcoming week? What day of week? Which specific hours?

  • Imagine how much easier scheduling would be if you could forecast your expected traffic based on historical trends.

  • Now imagine if each of your store managers had a staff planner in their hands every day that would tell them when they need their staff during the day. No one has labor hours to waste. And, no one wants to underserve a customer who has made the effort to shop.
  • If you still scheduling based on sales volumes – you are totally missing the opportunity to drive sales by staffing when shoppers are shopping.

9 lessons and 24 key takeaways.

All retailers must heed these lessons to successfully navigate the current pandemic and get ready for what comes next.