Technology is driving a renaissance in retail and completely changing the entire industry in the process. Customers have become used to the level of choice, product detail, and a level of digital interaction, such as product videos and customisation apps, which comes with shopping online. What’s more, they have begun to bring these expectations with them when they visit bricks-and-mortar stores. Despite the huge growth of online shopping, more than 40% of shoppers still like to make their purchases in a real shop.
This means that it is vital that today’s retailer develops a strategy that digitally engages with their customers using a consistent in-store experience that seamlessly blends the digital and physical.
Retailers can use digital technology to make the entire shopping experience for their customers simple and speedy. Kiosks, interactive tables, ship-from-store and click-to-collect services, and delivering key promotions direct to customers’ smartphones are just some of the ways in which retailers are successfully engaging with their clientele.
Increasingly, the consumer base is becoming filled with customers who have grown up as digital natives and for whom economic decisions are influenced by the way they use the internet and social media as tools. Store design must take into account consumer-facing technology that creates a unique in-store experience.
However, physical shopping spaces still possess advantages over online stores. Customers still get to see, touch and try out items, a visual and tactile experience that the virtual world cannot replicate. Combining this with technology results in the perfect shopping experience for digitally connected consumers.
For example, beacons can greet customers through their smartphone apps and offer suggestions based on their preferences. Connected fitting rooms can read RFID tags on clothes and, through an interactive screen, shoppers can browse and request other sizes, colours, matching items or similar designs. Integrating digital promotions from in-store to online will engage shoppers at all touchpoints. Retailers are certainly embracing digital promotions moving away from traditional paper coupons and on-pack codes, replacing these with digital experiences to cater for today’s digital consumer.
Retailer need to ensure the buying process will be fast and painless and offer that added value consumers crave. The future of retail is already upon us; contact us at Granby to find out how we can help you create a seamless customer journey fusing your digital marketing with your in-store presence.