Even before the pandemic began, the percentage of pet-owning households in the United States has been steadily on the rise.
According to a survey conducted by the American Pet Products Association (APPA), households with pets accounted for 58 percent of the total households in the US in 1988, 67 percent in 2019, and finally 70 percent in 2021. It’s estimated that over 90 million families in the US own at least one pet, and pet ownership is affecting the way people budget their finances and spend their money.
How will you benefit from this if your business doesn’t deal with pet products like wholesale dog beds or custom collars and toys? No matter if your business directly sells pet products or not, your establishment can still benefit from knowing that many of your first-time and returning customers have pets of their own.
To be specific, you can turn your business into a pet-friendly establishment that welcomes both pet owners and their furred animal companions. You can even take it a step further by providing them with experiences your competitors can’t match.
But before anything else, why should you make an effort to foster a pet-friendly environment for your business? Here are three compelling reasons to consider:
Consumers Want to Share More Experiences with Their Furred Family Members
Turning your business into a pet-friendly establishment will help pet owners associate your brand with the happy memories that they’re creating and sharing with their pets. It will also turn your business into a primary option for those who want to spend a bit of time out of their home with their furred companions.
By allowing pets into your boutique, for example, your brand can be more attractive to shoppers who want to buy a new outfit but can’t leave their pets alone at home for long periods. You’ll also be able to attract pet parents who may happen to be walking their pets and want to check out your shop.
Consumers Consider Their Pets’ Quality of Life When Making Purchasing Decisions
Pet parenthood is a responsibility that more and more Americans are taking seriously. In fact, it’s something that many households set aside a specific budget for.
In addition to buying food, beds, leashes, and other accessories, many pet parents set aside money for veterinary care. They may even alter their purchasing choices to ensure that their home remains a safe space for their dogs or cats. For example, some pet parents may be more willing to change their preferred brand or shop in a different store to ensure that the products that they’ll be taking home are safe for their pets.
A pet-friendly business considers these factors when choosing its product offerings and designing the shop or office. If you have a general goods store, for example, it’s a good idea to have a shelf or aisle dedicated to pet products. Alternatively, you can also dedicate a shelf or stock up on items that are free of ingredients that are harmful to pets.
All in all, being considerate of your pet-owning customers’ needs will make it easier for them to do their shopping. At the same time, it will also help you foster a good name for your brand among the pet parents in your community.
Many Businesses Are Overlooking the Value of Catering to Pets and Marketing to Pet Parents
Finally, turning your business into a welcoming place for pets and pet parents gives it a competitive edge over the other commercial enterprises in your area. Even if you don’t exactly sell pet products, pet parents will still choose your store because they know that they can do their shopping there with their pets in tow.
If you do sell pet products, you’re in an even better position to become pet owners’ establishment of choice. By advertising your business as being pet-friendly, pet parents will know that you can give them products or services that will suit the needs of their furred family members. As a result, they’ll choose to spend money in your commercial establishment over non-pet-friendly ones.
Being aware of what pets and pet owners need and want can help you deliver shopping experiences that will resonate with a significant portion of your customers. It can also convince them to keep bringing their business to you in the long run.
But before you label your business “pet-friendly,” make sure that you’re ready for the responsibility it will entail. This means preparing your team to provide pet-friendly services and putting up facilities that will make shopping much easier for pet owners who want to bring their pets along. You’ll also need to set ground rules for everyone who visits your business to make your establishment a safe space for all.
As long as you keep all the above in mind, you shouldn’t run into any issues during the process. With enough planning, you’ll be able to turn your store into a pet-friendly shop and enjoy all the benefits that come with it.