Monthly Archives: July 2018

Reasons Why You Should Work with an Investment Advisor

Navigating savings and debt along with reaching your financial goals is not easy to do on your own. Working with an advisor saves you the headache that comes with the process of planning for a happy and stress-free retirement.

Here are the top four reasons why you should work with an advisor to ensure you have the retirement that fits the lifestyle you want.

1.    An advisor can help with retirement planning

Planning requires time, knowledge and expertise. Fifty per cent of pre-retirees do not know how to plan for retirement.

One in four pre-retirees do not believe their retirement will be financially comfortable. Half of them expect to reach a lower standard of living in retirement than where they are at now.

An advisor can put you on the right track to be in control of your own finances and be prepared for retirement.

2.    An advisor can help you create better saving habits and accumulate more assets

Paying yourself first involves putting aside a percentage of each paycheque. But half of  pre-retirees are not saving on a regular basis [1].

Studies have indicated that those who use an advisor accumulate 3.9 times more assets. Individuals who worked with an advisor for 15 years or more increased their household assets by 290%.

3.    An advisor can help you develop a strategy to decrease debt and increase savings

4.    An advisor can help you build a plan to achieve long-term goals

An investment advisor will be able to ensure that you create firm plans to help you meet your targets to have the retirement you’ve dreamed of.

Ninety-one per cent of pre-retirees do not have a written, formal plan that maps out how much money they need to save for retirement and how they will get there .

An advisor will help you stick to the roadmap you’ve created without straying.

Are department stores dead?

Last week Hudson’s Bay announced 2,000 job cuts. This week Sears Canada raised doubts about its future.  Are the days of the department store dead?

Sadly, I think they are; maybe not in the next few years but definitely in the next decade. You only have to look back at what has been happening in the past 10 years to know the department store model has been in trouble.

I shopped at the Bay on the weekend and saw how customer service has declined. There were long lineups at tills and few staff on the floor to answer customers’ questions.

We all bear some responsibility in this decline. Online shopping has been the biggest competitor for larger stores.

Addressing the bottom line usually means a cut in staff. Less staff means more waiting and in a society where we have become accustomed to having everything on-demand, we turn our backs on a way of shopping whose time has passed.

Retail Traffic Counter Can Improve Customer Service

Customer service is one of the top factors people consider when they decide whether or not to visit your store. The RightNow Customer Experience Impact Report notes that “89% of consumers have stopped doing business with a company after experiencing poor customer service.” A second statistic, from Parature, says that “it takes 12 positive customer experiences to make up for one negative experience.”

  • Tough competition

There’s more competition than ever before and the stakes have never been higher—it’s predicted that by 2016, Americans will spend over $325 billion online.  Online-only retailers are growing their market share leaps and bounds because they  don’t have the overhead of operating a B&M location and can offer rock-bottom prices on products delivered right to your door. This can be hard to resist, so stores are fighting back with improved loyalty plans, digital signage and omni-channel marketing.

  • The customer is still always right

Despite all of these technological advances, the customer is still king and it’s the face-to-face interaction in-store that will largely determine whether or a not a shopper returns. And as shoppers look to buy more and more products online, retailers are investing more resources to ensure that every customer service interaction is a good one.

Much of customer service begins with staffing and understanding the busiest times. You don’t want to be the retailer where the checkout lines are always long and people are frustrated because there’s no one on the floor to help them.

At its most basic level, retail traffic counters can tell retailers how many people are visiting the store and how long they are staying. Retailers may also employ these counters around the store to determine what the busiest departments are, and if more staff is needed at changing rooms.

Using a retail traffic counter helps to optimize a retailer’s staffing so there are enough employees on-hand during the busiest shifts and ensures you are not wasting money by having too many people on the floor during slower times.

  • Lost in Aisle 5

Another common complaint you may hear is that “I can never find anything!” If you have a retail traffic counter and you use it in conjunction with your point of sale system, you can identify what the hot selling items are and place those displays front and center so people aren’t wandering around aimlessly searching for a certain product.

Retail traffic counters can also determine what areas people are visiting  around the store and assist with the planning and resetting of displays. By evaluating the way people traverse your store, you can see which pathways are the most frequented, which areas are underutilized and where there may be issues like crowding.

Retail traffic counters help keep eyes on nearly every aspect of your retail store. Gathering these analytics can help you make the changes for a better, faster and more pleasant customer experience at your business.