For the Boys
Increasingly, men are shopping with the ladies in their lives, or even on their own. So how can you make the shopping experience great for this new section of customers?
If the fashion industry leads trends and the home industry quickly follows then we should all be aware that changes are on the horizon for our female dominated industry. Case in point: for the first time ever, sales of menswear has outperformed womenswear in the US* (2013). As this trend trickles over into, gift, home and floral stores, shop owners are seeing more men than ever walk through their doors. How do you cater to this new demographic?
Treat Him Seriously
Men are more educated than ever when it comes to shopping—from buying gifts to furnishing their homes. So don’t assume that men are cluelessly stopping in your store to buy a gift for their wife. Instead approach them with an open mind to find out what they are looking for (for a refresher on talking to customers in general, read this blog). It might just surprise you to discover that young man is shopping for himself! (Guys like good smelling candles too!)
Cater to That Man
Create an area in store stocked with products especially for men. This could include shaving products; candles in manly scents, food items designed for men and even sports products like football themed cell phone cases. Give men a place to start their shopping experience and watch them begin to explore the rest of your store.
A Place to Call His Own
Of course some of your male shoppers will simply be accompanying their lady into your store with no particular agenda of their own. If that’s the case, your goal should be to keep him busy so she can shop more! To this end create a small nook with a place for him to sit. Stock it with male oriented magazines or some other distraction (we like these old fashioned metal puzzles) to keep him busy.
While our industry has traditionally been female dominated, as gender roles become more blended and men take a keener interest in shopping, we’re seeing a change. With a simple mental adjustment and a few store tweaks you can be prepared—and hopefully reap the benefits—of this change.