LOOKING TOWARDS THE FUTURE
Retail has long been on the frontlines of change and customer expectations and experiences will continue to rapidly evolve, with this shift accelerated by the pandemic.
For example, in the future shoppers are likely to use their mobiles more in-store to navigate and take advantage of information and special offers - combining the digital and physical experience for the best of both worlds. The customer insights gleaned from smarter ways of shopping will help staff to have an even greater understanding of what their customers are looking for and to be able to provide that service in a more flexible way.
As food for thought, here are some other examples of future innovations which are already being embraced by some retailers here and overseas:
· Stores may use booking systems and offer appointments to help with social distancing.
· Technologies to measure the number of people in a store and how long they stay there.
· Automated daily or hourly deep cleanings.
· Virtual fitting solutions, such as digital mirrors to allow customers to see what items look like on them without physically trying them on.
· Virtual reality solutions to see how beauty products look on customers.
· Consumers may prefer germ and contamination resistant packaging - or packaging that can be easily disinfected.
· Virtual assistance sessions with customers get help with personal styling, shopping assistance or e-commerce related activities.
· Controlled shifts to ensure if one shift was exposed to coronavirus, it doesn't potentially require shutting down the entire store.
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