08 June 2023

How to Buy for Every Customer: A Guide to Personalized Retail

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by Fiza Khan

As a retail business owner, your primary goal is to attract and retain customers. While offering a wide range of products and competitive pricing can help, one of the most effective ways to build customer loyalty is by offering personalized shopping experiences. In this article, we’ll explore six key strategies for buying for every customer, ensuring that each shopper feels seen, heard, and understood.

Know Your Customer Base

Before you can buy for every customer, you need to understand who your customers are. Knowing your customer base is essential for any successful retailer. By understanding your customers' needs and preferences, you can better tailor your product offerings to meet their demands. Market research is a great way to gather insights into your customer base. You can conduct surveys or focus groups to gather information about their shopping habits, buying preferences, and product expectations.



For instance, if you own a clothing store, you can analyze sales data to determine which items are the most popular among your customers. You can also ask your customers for feedback and suggestions on what they would like to see in your store.

According to a study conducted by McKinsey, understanding the customer base is crucial for increasing customer satisfaction and loyalty. The study found that companies that prioritize customer-centricity in their buying decisions outperform those that don't, with customer-centric companies achieving higher revenue growth and customer retention rates.

In addition, understanding your customer base can help you identify trends and shifts in the market. For example, if you notice an increase in demand for eco-friendly or sustainable products, you can adjust your buying strategy accordingly.

Moreover, it is important to note that some OFFPRICE Show vendors offer sustainable and eco-friendly products. This means that by attending the OFFPRICE Show, you can even find deals on high-quality products that align with the values of your environmentally-conscious customers. By keeping up with the latest trends and offering eco-friendly products, you can attract new customers and retain the existing ones who are passionate about sustainability.

Offer a Range of Products

To cater to a diverse customer base, you need to offer a range of products that meet a variety of needs and preferences. This means considering factors such as age, gender, lifestyle, and budget when selecting products to stock in your store.

One way to offer a range of products is to curate a mix of well-known brands and lesser-known, up-and-coming brands. This allows customers to find products they know and trust while also discovering new and exciting options. Also, offering a variety of price points can help appeal to customers with different budgets.



Research has shown that offering a range of products can boost sales and customer satisfaction. A study by Nielsen found that customers are more likely to make a purchase when presented with a wide selection of products. Furthermore, a survey by Invesp, found that 45% of online shoppers are more likely to shop on a site that offers personalized recommendations and a variety of products.

As an OFF-PRICE buyer, you can find a range of products from a variety of vendors at the OFFPRICE Show. With hundreds of exhibitors showcasing everything from clothing and accessories to home goods and beauty products, you can discover new products and brands to add to your store's inventory. 

Emphasize Customer Feedback

One way to emphasize customer feedback is by creating a customer loyalty program. This not only incentivizes customers to shop with you more frequently, but it also provides a platform for them to give feedback and make suggestions for future products. For example, Sephora's Beauty Insider program offers customers rewards, free samples, and exclusive access to products in exchange for their loyalty and feedback.

Another way to gather customer feedback is by monitoring social media channels and online reviews. This not only allows you to see what your customers are saying about your store, but also provides insight into what products are in demand and which ones are falling short. For example, if multiple customers are requesting a certain product on social media, you may want to consider adding it to your inventory.



It's also important to act on customer feedback and make changes accordingly. If multiple customers are requesting a certain product or brand, consider bringing it in even if it falls outside of your usual buying strategy. This shows that you value and are listening to your customers' opinions and preferences.

As an off-price buyer, attending trade shows like the OFFPRICE Show can also provide opportunities for gathering customer feedback. Meeting with vendors and seeing their products in person can give you a better idea of what your customers are looking for and which products are likely to sell well. 

Train Your Staff on Personalized Sales Techniques

To provide a personalized shopping experience, your staff must be trained in personalized sales techniques. This includes building rapport with customers, asking questions to understand their needs, and making product recommendations based on those needs.



For example, if a customer comes in looking for a specific item, your sales staff should not only locate the item but also ask about their intended use for it and offer complementary items or alternatives. A study by Salesfloor found that 65% of customers are more likely to make a purchase when a sales associate takes the time to personalize their shopping experience.

Leverage Technology

Leveraging technology can help you collect and analyze customer data to better understand their preferences, purchase history, and behavior. This information can be used to offer personalized recommendations and promotions, such as email campaigns tailored to specific customer segments.

In addition, tools like chatbots and virtual assistants can provide personalized support to customers even outside of regular business hours. For example, a customer browsing your online store late at night can receive immediate assistance from a chatbot, leading to a more personalized experience and potentially higher sales.

Another example of leveraging technology to personalize the shopping experience is using mobile apps. Many retailers offer mobile apps that allow customers to create personalized profiles, receive targeted promotions, and even make purchases directly from their phones. This level of personalization and convenience can help boost customer loyalty and drive sales.

Attend Trade Shows and Conferences

Attending trade shows and conferences can also give you the chance to learn about innovative technologies and strategies that can help you personalize the shopping experience even further. In addition, these events provide valuable opportunities to connect with other retailers and industry experts, allowing you to share insights and ideas. Savvy buyers should attend multiple markets with a variety of vendors and product categories to ensure you research all opportunities. 


For example, at the OFFPRICE Show, you can connect with vendors who specialize in off-price and discount merchandise. Some of these vendors offer unique and specialized products that you may not find elsewhere, such as sustainable or eco-friendly options.

Moreover, attending events like the OFFPRICE Show can help boost your store's exposure and reputation. By showcasing the unique and high-quality products you've discovered at these events, you can attract new customers and build loyalty among your existing ones.


By following these six strategies, you can create a personalized shopping experience that caters to the unique needs and preferences of each customer. Remember, a happy customer is a loyal customer, and offering a personalized experience can go a long way towards building that loyalty. So, get to know your customers, offer a diverse range of products, listen to feedback, train your staff, leverage technology, and attend trade shows and conferences. With these strategies in place, you'll be well on your way to becoming a retail success story.



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