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Appointment Scheduling in Department Stores: Bringing Back Customers

Imogen Wethered
by Imogen Wethered

Department stores can use appointment scheduling to encourage footfall and reverse years of decline.

Department stores and malls are destinations in their own right: a place to shop, catch up and unwind. For years, they were the ‘go-to’ shopping experience for teens, busy parents and the ‘one-stop-shop’ retiree. In recent times, however, these cultural bastions have been in decline. A recent Washington Post article revealed that 200 department stores have closed in the past year and a further 800 (half the US total) could close in the next five years.

The pandemic deprived department stores of their physical appeal and the accelerating emergence of online shopping also hit them hard. Department stores and malls need a silver bullet: appointment scheduling. 

consumer insights department store

Department store customers want appointment scheduling

Qudini’s May 2021 consumer survey found that appointment scheduling with department stores is becoming increasingly popular. 77% of department store customers want to be able to book at least one type of appointment. These included booking a slot for a make-up and beauty treatment (35%) and arranging a store visit to view luxury clothing when the shop isn’t crowded (30%). 43% of customers said they would be more likely to schedule an appointment compared to before the pandemic. 

Almost a third (32%) of consumers who want to schedule appointments do so for safety reasons. Therefore, it’s not surprising that the Covid-19 pandemic has brought a sharper focus to department store retail choreography. With shoppers almost equally as interested in saving time (29%) and being able to plan their day better (24%), the appeal of appointments will likely outlast the pandemic. It’s the competitive boost that department stores need as they face an existential threat.

Retaining business

93% of customers that have used an appointment service in the last year said it had at least one positive impact on them. This has included driving them to make a purchase (24%) and making them more likely to return in the future (29%). 

appointment scheduling in jewerly retail

Putting these metrics into tangible numbers:

A department store with 200 appointments per month, per store (with an average transaction value of $54) could earn an extra $99,600 per store, per year

Cost-effective returns for department stores

The pandemic has hit many department stores’ bottom lines, but deploying appointment scheduling technology is simple, rapid and cost-effective. We asked consumers what type of appointments they’d like to book. The three most popular methods involved resources that most retailers already have – a phone number, a website and shop floor staff:

 

Department Stores only need to equip their locations with the right software, facilitate appointment scheduling from their website and train in-store staff in order to boost appointment traffic.

What’s more, our 2020 survey found what type of appointment scheduling department store customers want:

Schedule an appointment with Qudini

To drive appointment traffic to your stores and boost customer sales, experience, loyalty and advocacy, schedule an appointment with Qudini to find out more.

Download the full whitepaper report on appointment demand within department stores

 

 

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New best practice guide

Our new best practice guide explains how Appointment Booking Landing pages will drive traffic to your in-store and virtual appointment services.

Latest consumer survey report

Our latest consumer survey report shows which types of retail stores and banks customers want to be able to schedule appointments within…

Recent consumer survey report

Our recent consumer survey report shows how the pandemic has changed consumer shopping habits and which habits will be here to stay…

Upcoming Webinar

Our Upcoming Webinar will present consumer insights on how the pandemic has changed consumer shopping habits. Sign-up below for Tuesday October 12th (2pm ET | 11am PT).

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