Get It Local Today! Enroll before launch
Leading retailers are anxious for the industry to step up to begin driving sales traffic to Christian stores using the Get It Local Today! opportunity. The platform ready to launch will offer online shoppers at publisher websites the option of buying products at local Christian stores as an alternative to Amazon and big-box retailers.
“I welcome any initiative that will bring people to our store,” said Danny Vera of Christ Centered Life Store (Ft. Myers, Florida). “Having seen Borders and Family close near our store, we have to do anything we can do to survive while still shining the Light of Christ in our community.”
The program is a cooperative effort among CBA, The Covenant Group, and The Parable Group and is endorsed by the Logos Group and Signature Websites. Leading publishers have committed to post the Get It Local Today! widget on their corporate websites to help drive direct-to-consumer sales to local Christian stores for purchase.
Free to Play
The program is free to retailers and publishers with the intent to divert some sales and traffic to local stores and giving consumers options to buy local, said CBA President Curtis Riskey. “A significant and growing proportion of overall publisher sales is direct-to-consumer. This strategy gives consumers a choice to buy local.”
Online Converts to In-Store
Lorraine Valk of Parable Christian Store of St. Joseph (St. Joseph, Michigan), said her store has seen online shopping convert to in-store shopping through her existing “Hold in Store” feature on the store’s website.
“The ability for a customer to see that I stock an item is so valuable, and the fact that they can reserve it without a phone call has been a huge bonus,” Valk said. “Customers want to support our stores, but we must make it easy for them to do so and do it in the form they prefer.”
She said she has more sales using this feature than actual sales on her website, which she said, “shows that customers are doing research online, but physically coming to the store.”
Valk also uses Facebook, messenger, text, voicemail, email, and phone calls to capture customer orders. “I will take them however they come,” she said. “Make it easy for the customer to get the information that they want and make it easy for them to pick it up from you.”
“I fully support the Get It Local Today! initiative and look forward to even more traffic coming into my store because customers know we have what they want,” she said. “This is a prime example of ‘a rising tide raises all ships’ – let’s drive those individuals to our stores!”
Get It Local
Rick Lewis of Logos Bookstore of Dallas said publishers are also in a tough spot as retailers and want to send business to Christian stores. “How can we lose with that,” he said. “Without the get-it-local (program) many of these customers who are contacting the publishers would never have heard of us.”
Lewis said he doesn’t expect a lot of business from the referrals, “but why should I look askance at what can potentially find its way to my store?”
Lewis said he much prefers working face-to-face with customers, but he won’t ignore an email from a customer he doesn’t know. “…If a potential customer wants to feel out the atmosphere of the store via email as a first step, so be it. I want to help them take the next step and the one after that and the next one that finally brings them into the store.”
He said merging online and in-store is not that complicated. “We want to stay in business to do the ministry that God has called us to. We need customers. Old ones and new ones.
“Thanks to the publishers who are taking part in this project,” Lewis said.
Info and Enroll
Vera encouraged Christian retailers to act. “I can sit and watch and pray, or I can pray and act and do anything we can do to continue being the light that God called us to be,” he said.
Click to enroll. It takes about five minutes to give permission for your store to be listed and set up data reporting to let customers know the product is in stock at your store.