Focus groups are invaluable. They are a way to gather insight and feedback from your customers in a close knit setting. Here are a few ways you can execute one in your store.
DEFINE YOUR PURPOSE: Figure out the reason behind why you want this feedback. Is your focus to sell specific kinds of products? Is it to get more foot traffic on certain days? Or, is it just to increase the overall customer experience? Make a list and then form one sentence that can be your overarching guide.
SET A BUDGET & FORMAT: Determine how much you can spend for the focus group and how many participants you want, which would include incentives and promotion costs. Also, discuss the details with your team. Will this be after hours? Will you set up chairs in a few rows and have a table with refreshments? It’s also important to write out your talking points to ensure the questions are open-ended to encourage detailed responses. You will also need to assign someone from your store to be the moderator and host of the event. This should be someone with an energetic and friendly personality so that participants feel welcome.
RECRUIT PARTICIPANTS: Reach out to your existing customer base through email newsletters, social media, and in-store sign up sheets that you can leave at the checkout counter.
PROVIDE INCENTIVES: It’s so essential to offer each participant a small token of appreciation for their involvement. A discount for future purchases, a small gift card, or free product samples in a nice bag, is a nice touch.
ANALYZE FINDINGS: Ask the participants if it is ok to record the session on video. If you get consent, this is a great way you can go back and analyze the responses and take notes to identify trends and patterns that can help you improve your business.
FOLLOW UP: Remember to send a thank you card in the mail to each participant and to send an email expressing your gratitude for their involvement and to let them know how their feedback will be used to enhance the customer experience in your store.