While many people now take photos with their smartphone, the world's camera makers are still doing a good trade in compact digital, or even film, cameras. Not only are people willing to take them places where they won't take a smartphone, but the advantages of a good physical zoom lens, huge amounts of storage space and the simple ability to use them with a tripod, or put them on a wall or bench for a group photo make them preferable to fussing about with, losing or breaking a smartphone.
The same retro trend that sees growing vinyl music sales is also driving people to use their old film cameras again. With many frustrated by all the "features" and digital trickery of their smartphones, retailers should be encouraging their customers to dig out that old camera, or try one of the new generation instants, which provide low-cost, good point-of-sale opportunities.
As a retailer, you should be reminding buyers that their compact snapper is often left at home, in a drawer and needs to be brought out for family, social and travel occasions. If you have any marketing material next to your batteries, always ensure a camera is present. If you want to go further, highlight the benefits with some suitable examples of camera zoom and flexibility versus that of most smartphones. Encourage staff to ask customers if they need any extra AA batteries for their camera if you see one around their neck.
If you want to expand your range, then compact cameras cost from as little as £20 these days if you want to tempt buyers, with waterproof models from around £40 if you are located nearby beaches, watersports venues or waterslide parks and want to help customers remember their day better, as those are very much smartphone free-zones.
When it comes to higher-end cameras, most have moved on to custom or proprietary battery backs these days, but there are still plenty of models that take Lithium-Ion AA batteries, and having stocks of these for snappers heading off to local festivals, air shows, racing and other events where a decent zoom lens is essential is always a good move, with plenty of reminders in the shop windows about such events to link your store to your customers' needs.