If you own a store, you’ve noticed this. When the store has no customers inside, passing clients on the street, seem to resist to enter.
But then, when customers start to come in, people outside are attracted, like a magnet. The more customers the store has, the more people want to get in.
But there’s another factor that you maybe didn’t think about.
It’s not only the number, but the look of the customers. Teenage people don’t want to go to a store full of older people (in this case, the opposite is also true). “Cool” people don’t want to go to stores with “uncool” people. And so on.
One business that it’s easy to see this phenomenon, is restaurants. Customers prefer restaurants with customers inside. That’s social proof – if there are customers inside, food must be good. And that’s why good restaurant owners will seat the first customers in a place where people outside can see them.
So, what can you do about it?
First, if your store have a problem attracting customers when there are no customers inside, do one of these:
- Make one or two employees act like a customer.
- You, a friend, or family member can also act like a customer.
- Hire stunts (amateur actors) to act like customers. It could be profitable. (I’ve done this)
Second, look at you customers that are inside the store. Are these the kind of customers you want to attract? If not, there’s something wrong with your store, your offer, or both.