- The convergence of digital and physical channels is critical for retailers who want to succeed in building their brands with their customer bases. The shopping experience from a customer perspective must be accessible, available and deliverable – all in the format and time that she wants it.
- The in-store shopping experience must be relevant to the shopper. Gone are the days of “keeping her in the store as long as possible so she will spend more.” The new mantra is, “differentiated product in a captivating environment delivered in the most efficient manner.”
- Using in-store technologies to continue the customer touchpoint beyond the four walls is critical. The use of in-store messaging, iBeacons, social media, loyalty programs and personal associate communications before, during and after the store visit continues the “shopping experience.”
- Convenience is the key deliverable for today’s customer and the future customer of tomorrow. “Make it easy” and relevant. Complex infrastructures might be in the background, but the front side has to be “easy.”
Here is the bonus take-away that has created interest for 2015, but probably will not see substantial deployment from retailers until 2016: Predictive and foresight analytics. Retailers traditionally have a ‘rear view mirror’ approach for analytics and insights which in the future will transform into a predictive model.
My two favorite quotes came from two diverse perspectives:
“Best the economy has looked from before the (financial) crisis!” Ben Bernanke, Former Federal Reserve Chairman.
“The concert is the epitome of music enjoyment… listening to your favorite music with friends. Physical retail can be the same metaphor … make that store experience the “concert” that keeps the “fans” wanting more.” James Curleigh, President, Levi’s.