What’s In Store for In-Store Tech?

We wanted to close out a great week at Shop.org with another topic we found threaded throughout the conference and among brands and retailers: How technology is transforming – not replacing – the physical retail experience. I think we’ve firmly settled into the fact that omni-channel business is just business as usual. But is it possible to make that experience even more seamless?  Customers seem to think so and we think that small-tech is inching towards a new retail singularity.

NRF found that consumers are most satisfied with technologies that streamline the store experience.

68%  Buy online, pick up in store

66%  In-app store navigation

65%  Mobile payment

We had a lot of fun building and sharing one of our in-store augmented reality concepts this week. In this Everyday Carry concept, shoppers select new items in a store and virtually unite them with the EDC they own, whenever and wherever they want. Concepts like this are clever disruptions but also fun idea starters, and our Shop.org turned into an idea lab for a couple of days as we shared this with the retail community.

AR is getting a lot of buzz, and for good reason. But the consumer data is telling us that this is still a new frontier and somewhat on the periphery. If the glass is half-empty, then it’s risky territory. If the glass is half-full, it’s ripe for growth and differentiation.

NRF asked consumers “Which technologies have you heard of?”

68%    Mobile Payment

65%    Buy online, pick up in store

52%    3D printing

45%    Tablet/Mobile-powered associates

35%    In-app store navigation

31%    Messaging apps/chat

30%    In-store digital displays

27%    Visual search

21%    Voice search

20%    Augmented reality

18%    Virtual reality

13%    Smart dressing rooms

Our glass is half full! Look for a lot more from us on these technologies and more as we gear up for 2018.

 

Data sources: Source: NRF Fall 2017 Consumer Review

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