SALE signs have been hanging in the windows of too many retail businesses for too long. It seems that retailers have forgotten how to be different, how to play to their strengths.

Chasing sales only on price is a mugs game. There is no differentiation. Every day a retail business trades with a SALE running beyond a week or two for a specific purpose is another day the value of the retail brand is discounted.

Running sales perpetually, as so many retailers are doing today, tells shoppers that prices in the business have been reset.

Countless studies have shown that shoppers often buy on more than price. Service, convenience and value are key factors. None of these factors are represented in the perpetual SALE sign.

Smart retailers, and there are plenty of these, are attracting shoppers and demonstrating value in ways other than by handling a SALE sign for months. They are using business data and businesses systems, like Point of Sale software, to promote their point of difference through value.

Here are five ways retailers can use good Point of Sale software to promote their business without running a traditional SALE and without devaluing their brand:

  1. Loyalty. Run a customer loyalty program and deliver genuine rewards for genuine loyalty. This will quickly separate your business from the faux loyalty systems one often sees in national retailers. Focusing on quick access rewards is the key to rapidly building shopper satisfaction.
  2. Appreciation. By tracking your shoppers and what they purchase you can show your appreciation through a text message, email or letter. Thanking your shoppers in a structured way can help build their appreciation of your business.
  3. Add value. A three for two or four for three offer is quite different to a SALE. Using your Point of Sale software to manage and offer these volume purchase offers can help drive sales, especially is the threshold for accessing the bonus product is above what a shopper would usually purchase.
  4. Promote at touch points. By consistently promoting on shopper receipts, point of purchase customer displays, customer accounts and other common customer touch points in the business can expect to achieve incremental business. The keys are a simple consistent message promoted consistently.
  5. Reward employees for sales growth. By rewarding employees for sales growth, achieving sales beyond your set sales targets, you empower and motivate your shop floor team to grow the business. The right reward should encourage your team to work smarter and be more engaged in pursuing sales growth. Your software can track sales and rewards for you.

Any retail business running a sale in today’s retail climate is running a me-too campaign. They are begging for the business to be compared to every other business running a sale.

Retailers who engage in a mixture of the five suggestions in this article set themselves apart. They also respect their brands by making it about value more than price. These businesses which play outside the most common and expensive sale game are the businesses which can expect to do well in tough times.

Good Point of Sale software is the key to such creative and value-based engagement. It helps with execution as well as tracking of results. Tower Systems works with retailers on such campaigns, helping to find the best mix of ways Point of Sale software can help a retail business grow.