How physical stores are learning from their e-rivals

May 26, 2016 11:38
Retailers in Hong Kong have begun using "flash sales" to drive their business, copying a tactic deployed by e-commerce firms.

As Hong Kong's retail industry suffers from a sales slowdown, some traditional brick-and-mortar players are determined not to let the situation get worse.

Some are revamping their product strategies in order to attract more local customers and cut the reliance on mainland tourists.

Numerous jewelry brands, for instance, are offering cheaper diamond sets in a bid to lure budget-conscious shoppers.

Others are picking up a few tricks from their online competitors.

Flash sales, a deal-of-the-day business model, in which a website offers certain products only for a few hours or a couple of days, used to be unique to e-commerce platforms.

But these days, it's not uncommon to see physical stores, including both big chains and small standalone retailers, use the same gimmick.

The trend is especially apparent in the fashion business.

Some stores have half-price sales lasting for a day, while some offer special bargains over a weekend.

Traditional retailers have also begun to use social media channels extensively to draw more clients and build up a following by providing constant updates on the latest offerings and sales campaigns.

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EJ Insight writer