London Heathrow is the 3rd busiest airport in the world. In 2015, Heathrow had almost 75 million travellers pass through the airport and there seem to be new records being released by all airports month on month!
With summer looming, airports all over the world are preparing for their busiest time of year, and with the growth we have seen year on year set to continue, it is likely another record will be broken!
Airport retailers are going to be in higher demand than ever which delivers the opportunity for retailers to drive their profits to new heights. It is essential they are doing everything in their power to enhance their marketing strategies and customer experience to ensure they are generating maximum customer spend.
Airport retailers have a captive audience, with check-in time leaving on average an hour wait in-between security and going to the gate, travellers are left milling around the restaurants and shops at a loose end. A lot of travellers will be in the holiday mindset, meaning many are willing to spend more on products than usual and are often much more open to treating themselves to luxury products they would typically budget for. This is an excellent opportunity for retailers to capture these travellers and drive store sales.
Many consumers are already excited to shop in airport retailers due to the ‘duty-free’ incentive; this discount joint with the holiday mindset makes passengers a retailer’s dream customer!
Turn back the clocks ten years ago, retailers weren’t aware of the huge opportunities to be exploited within airport retail, fast forward today and brands are fighting for floor space! Airport operators are continually expanding and transforming their space to keep up with this ever-growing demand. Everyday is a Saturday in airports; there are constant streams of people passing through who are all potential customers. The diversity of traffic is an opportunity to expand your consumer base in addition to driving sales. With the technological developments and data capture opportunities through scanning boarding cards, airport retailers can monitor what; demographic, gender, age, nationality and countries their consumer travels to, all of which can be used to develop more effective marketing campaigns and store layouts to enhance the customer experience. It may also provide information about new markets retailers should be expanding to next!
With summer around the corner, airports are preparing for new records of passenger numbers, strategising ways to relieve the inevitable strain on the retail team and planning how to maintain a high level of service whilst maximising on the mass footfall!
With the on-going developments and constant growth year on year, airport retailers are destined for future growth.
Katrina Whitehead, Senior Marketing Executive, Foundation Recruitment