You Can't Always Get What You Want, But If You Try Sometimes You Might Find Technology Gives You What You Need
One only needs to go to an industry show these days to see that the sheer number of tech firms in attendance trying to sell into that market is staggering. These tech firms, however, are all offering to do the same thing, provide data analytics to retailers about their customers.
Given how quick consumers are to embrace technological advances, it is likely that Amazon Go stores will become an immediate player on the retail scene, whilst at the same time, the ease of use and accessibility that has coaxed thousands of British consumers into shopping online is unlikely to abate.
As consumers, we're often guilty of holding retailers to ransom. We expect the same brand experience across every real world and digital touchpoint. We want information immediately, great experiences and the best possible service in the fastest, simplest and most convenient way for what we're doing at that time.
Retail companies often spend most of the year preparing for Black Friday. It is often a means for them to make massive financial gains in an otherwise challenging month. Moreover, the high level of competition means that businesses need to invest significant time, effort, and money to ensure everything from product delivery, marketing campaigns and customer WiFi works smoothly and efficiently.
Online retail is easy and convenient, but shopping is also a social experience and this is where 'bricks and mortar' retailing continues to excel. A visit to a physical store can mean time with family and friends. And there are many purchases that people like to make, where they are able to see, touch and even smell products before making a choice.
High streets need to make available the tools consumers desire to interact in-store. This will allow the consumer to not only browse in-store, it will also encourage them to complete their purchase and take their shopping away with them.
Whether it's a Tesco Clubcard, Nectar points or a Boots Advantage card - most of us have a variety of loyalty cards in our wallet. But where did it all start? Can we even remember the days before loyalty schemes - and where can it go from here?