In conducting one of our marketing audits recently for a retail store, the term ‘retail therapy’ was thrown around a lot. It got me thinking… why don’t more retail outlets adopt the literal meaning of this term?

For women, shopping is so much more than just ‘buying stuff’. It’s a chance to meet friends, chat, relate, experience… all the things a woman loves to do. If they didn’t enjoy it, why do they do it so much and so often?

Retail therapy should be more than just an expression about shopping in general. Why can’t stores themselves offer ‘retail therapy’? Imagine a clothing store that had a couch and coffee area where you could relax for 10 minutes and take your high heels off. What about receiving a free massage while you wait for your purchase to be gift wrapped. I would especially like to see Woolworths or Coles offer complimentary wine and cheese after 4pm on Fridays (yeah i know they couldn’t due to liquor laws etc. – but wouldn’t it just be nice?).

Imagine the cross promotional opportunities if more retailers thought along these lines. And imagine the increase in sales! I know I’d drive half way across town just for a free glass of white and a piece of creamy blue on a cracker while I shopped for my groceries.