Let’s face it: the internet has massively made an impact on the retail industry. Brands and services that once struggled to obtain a presence on our high streets have now found a secure space on the internet, pulling in both new and loyal customers daily.
We purely have technology to thank for this. Due to the ease for anyone to launch a website, create an app, or start a social media presence, the range of brands and products available to us is growing rapidly.
One of the latest shifts in digital trends for the retail industry is to give the customer a more personalized experience. Today’s digital consumer can be highly demanding. They know what they want, and they expect to get it.
Let’s explore some of the technologies that are leading the landscape and directly impacting the retail industry.
Mobile has become much more advanced than just bringing us interactive games we can play and giving us access to the internet on-the-go. Nowadays, we have brands like Amazon Go starting to offer mobile shoppers the chance to make a purchase without even checking out at all.
The growth of mobile responsive websites, mobile apps, mobile-enhanced product reviews and discounts on demand is set to increase. The mobile wearables industry is also predicted to rapidly grow by 2020, shaking up the digital world.
Soon, people will be able to virtually walk into stores in other countries and try on items without even touching them, all through the advanced technology of virtual reality. This will all be carried out through mobile technology.
Still very much utilizing mobile technology, health devices have exploded onto the scene, and it’s more common than uncommon to now own a wearable fitness device. These can track your steps, monitor your heartbeat and count your calories. But the more advanced models can indicate the levels of your stress and anxiety, as well as alert you to poor sleep qualities.
The rise of wearable devices has only brought positivity into the retail industry. With more people becoming aware of their poor fitness levels, these devices have encouraged us to become more active, thus leading to an increase in gym memberships, activewear clothing, and sports footwear. On the health side, our interest in wellness items like the CBD products from Cope CBD and essential oils is on the increase, enabling us to bring balance and calmness to our hectic lives.
Expect to see more health, well-being and fitness wearable devices available in 2020 that work through mobile and Bluetooth technologies.
The smarter artificial intelligence is becoming, the more it is allowing retailers to start understanding their customers’ personal preferences much more clearly than ever before.
Customers now want their needs anticipating, as the technology world leans heavily on personalization and streamlined purchases.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the powerhouse that gives you recommendations of products you might have an interest in. You know when you’re browsing the internet or social media apps and you are randomly shown deals you might be interested in or stores you may like to discover? That’s AI working to tempt you into shopping further.
It’s a dream for retailers.
We touched on it above, but one of the biggest technology trends which will have a large impact on retailers is no other than advanced virtual reality. Customers do tend to be held back by not being able to physically try an item on when shopping online.
This is where VR brings a real-life “experience” to the customer, letting them try out ‘the object’ without holding it in real life.
This is still in the development stage, and many of us currently don’t have access to VR technology. However, it is clear that technology holds incredible potential, with some estimating that we will soon be able to test drive cars in a VR world without even leaving the house. You heard it here first!
As the retail industry is extremely competitive, it’s important that retailers do what they can to embrace change. It’s about always being one step ahead, understanding the trends and working to a flexible strategy that allows a company to amend its growth plans.
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