Dialed In: How Many Tests Does it Take to Start a Retail Business? with Morgan Davis of MarketDial

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Starting a retail business can feel like walking through fog. There are the essentials, like aesthetics, products and location, but even then retailers often don’t realize the extensive testing that goes into maximizing branding, marketing, and even pricing.

On the first episode of Dialed In, we sit down with the CEO of MarketDial, Morgan Davis, who explains how to identify the most crucial points for brick and mortar stores to achieve better results.

According to Davis, “Most good retailers tend to be alike,” and the top businesses tend to always be innovation-driven and customer-focused. But even those businesses struggle, and when they do, the right actionable decision isn’t always so clear. Where does MarketDial come in? Retailers have more transactional data than they’ve ever had before, and not only do they have information about what customers are purchasing, but they have info about customers themselves, their income, likes and dislikes, and shopping behavior. As a software company, Davis is able to take that information and guide clients in the ways they can create A/B testing experiments that test X, Y, and Z products and marketing strategies.

Businesses may have ideas about competing priorities, innovative ideas, or a marketing team whose job is to come up with new ways to communicate value to their customers, but they may not know which of these ideas is going to be the most successful. Often, they may end up investing in the wrong path, or splitting their funds between several ideas when they could have gone with one full throttle.

“They’re able to test new products, different displays, a different pricing structure, etc., and that testing culture allows us to drive business through rigorous testing by knowing which ideas will be more impactful,” Davis said.

Sometimes they do testing and “15 percent of the changes recommended were a disaster”, and to Davis, that’s a win because “success to us is not every test working perfectly, it’s finding out what does work and doesn’t and learning from those to improve your business model.”

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