Harper Grey: The Signs.com Test Drive

 

Retail Insights with Harper Grey

Since Signs.com announced the release of the new website this week, they asked me to look it over and review it from a consumer’s perspective. This worried my husband, who had heard stories about my first few jobs in clothing stores where I spent more than my paycheck on the merchandise. But I figured, “Hey, it’s signs. Surely I won’t have a shopping addiction on Signs.com’s website.” Read More

Harper Grey: What You’re Doing Right!

 

Retail Insights with Harper Grey

Often when I sit down to write this column, I find myself thinking of all the things store owners and their employees are doing wrong. My job is to give you an idea of what your customers are thinking and feeling as they shop in your store and help you fix what’s wrong. The goal is for you to have happy customers that ultimately drop more cash in your store and make you more successful. But sometimes I feel like all I do is tell you what you’re doing wrong. So today, I’ve resolved to be more positive and instead, tell you what you’re doing right.
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Why I “Like” Your Facebook Page…& Why I Don’t

 

Retail Insights with Harper Grey

I’m not one of those people who has to “check in” on my Facebook page whenever I go out with friends. I don’t update my status to tell people what I ate for breakfast, if I have a headache, or if I’m excited about the latest TV show. I don’t post an Instagram of my dinner when I go to a restaurant. But I do use Facebook to keep up with friends and relatives. And I have “Liked” some companies, musical artists and organizations.

I see signs in stores and restaurants all the time, asking me to “Like” their Facebook pages. And most of the time I don’t do it. But every once in awhile, I’ll whip out my phone and “Like” a company on the spot. What compels me to action on these occasions? I’ve come up with a few reasons. Read More

Harper Grey: When The Wait Is Worth It

 

Retail Insights with Harper Grey

Some people don’t mind waiting. They stand patiently in long lines, sit in the doctor’s office waiting room for hours, wait in the lobby of restaurants to get a table. All without complaint. They must be meditating or employing some kind of zen technique that keeps them cool and calm. Other people . . . well, let’s just say that I don’t like to wait. I tend to get a little grumpy when I run into delay. But I’m trying to become more like my zen-like colleagues. I’ve been reflecting on the various times in which the wait is worth it.

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Promotional Emails: A Lesson in Emotional Turmoil

 

The Savvy Shopper - Harper Grey

When I took my daughter back-to-school shopping this fall, it seemed like every retailer had a “Preferred Customer” program. I was encouraged to sign up for the free programs and assured that they afforded me special discounts several times a year. So I willingly gave three different companies my personal information, including my email address. I figured that it might be a wise idea to get “special discounts,” given that I have a teenaged daughter that has turned out to be somewhat of a fashionista.

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My Fickle Love Affair With Self-checkouts

 

The Savvy Shopper - Harper Grey

Cynics say there’s no such thing as love at first sight, but I beg to differ. The first time I saw a store with self-checkout, I swooned. Six shiny little check stands with cute little lights and fancy touch screens glistened in the space where the grocery store once shelved magazines. I don’t know (or care) where the magazines ended up . . . the point was that I got to be IN CONTROL of my grocery ringing up. And secretly, I’d always wondered how fun it was to scan all those bar codes. That turned out to be a little bit of a letdown, but overall, the self-checkout quickly became my favorite thing about the grocery store.

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Is Procrastination Costing You Money?

 

The Savvy Shopper - Harper Grey

Why do today what you can put off ‘til tomorrow? It’s certainly one of my mantras. And when it applies to things like grocery shopping, washing the car or (as my husband can attest), vacuuming, it’s not that big of a deal. The world won’t end if my car has a few hundred bugs on the front grill.

But when you procrastinate with your business, it’s a different story.

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How to Impress When the Wheels Fall Off

Impress-Your-CustomersYour restaurant is fabulous. Your menu includes gourmet offerings prepared by your “world-class” chef. The decor is classy and upscale and the ambiance is quiet and romantic. Your wait staff is knowledgeable and professional. All in all, an impressive dining experience. And most of your customers come in, eat and leave satisfied. You figure that if you just do everything perfectly, they’ll continue to be impressed, right? Maybe. But the odds that you’ll be perfect 100% of the time are pretty slim. Not to worry, though . . . perfection is not the best way to impress your customers.

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