Digital retail: Three trends changing the game
Razorfish is a full service digital agency lucky enough to partner with several forward-thinking retail brands including Uniqlo (Uniqlo.com), Audi (Audi City ‘digital showrooms’ in London, Beijing and Berlin), ASOS (ASOS.cn) and Argos (the digital gift guide). From these leaders and in my role as Retail Director, Europe I have observed three top trends changing the game.
It’s not about the channel, it’s about the customer
Multi-channel and omni-channel are clunky ways of explaining how customers expect to be able to shop these days – moving seamlessly online and off, in-store and out. Unfortunately most retailers aren’t set up to deliver this properly. With different business units running different touch-points and jockeying for position within the organisation continuity can be incredibly difficult to achieve.
Recently fashion retailer Neiman Marcus took the bold move of restructuring their management team to reflect a ‘customer first’ mentality, giving John Koryl an expanded role across store operations, eCommerce and customer care – the entire customer journey.
Razorfish believe future-ready retailers will start with a vision of how to delight their customers then do whatever necessary to deliver this vision at every touch point, every time.
(Almost) instant gratification
Ten years ago the phrase ‘next day delivery’ meant dubiously paying a substantial fee for a delivery which, if requested before noon, might or might not appear within 48-hours. Today ‘next day delivery’ is not only reliable, if you spend enough it’s free, and, in the case of Amazon Prime it’s actually a new way of shopping.
Companies like Shutl and City Sprint have appeared to give the urban ‘I need it now customer’ same-day-delivery within a 60-minute window for £10. And our client Argos provides a valuable customer service with its 60-second promise: from reserved online to collectable in store.
Soon we will expect same day delivery to be the norm. Indeed, last year China’s JD.com launched the option for many items to be delivered within three hours, effectively giving millions of Chinese office workers the ability to place an order by 3pm and have their shopping arrive right after work.
These rapid conveniences will become normal for most retailers, generating greater repeat purchases and loyalty from those that can deliver, literally.
From high street shopping to high street theatre
As online buying becomes even faster, cheaper, convenient and pleasurable, the role of high street shopping in our lives will change fundamentally.
We believe the remaining forms of high street bricks and mortar will become about experience first and buying second. Branded stores will become fashion, technology, automotive, grocery or sports theatre – places we will go to delight our senses and inspire our next online purchases. These stores will have few staff, be small format, have great interactivity and be overall more sensual. Audi City in London’s Picadilly Circus is a great example of this trend.
As Amazon’s founder and CEO Jeff Bezos says of ecommerce, “We are in the absolute infancy of the change.” Thankfully, I believe the future will be the better for shoppers and retailers alike.
Motivated and inspired by what’s next, Razorfish helps its clients navigate the unknown, drive change and transform business. One of the pioneers of marketing in the digital age, Razorfish has a unique blend of technology, creativity and media at its core. The agency’s world class capabilities in strategic consulting, experience design, brand building, technology platforms, data services, retail/commerce and media services enable transformational work for clients including Delta Air Lines, McDonald’s, Mercedes-Benz USA, Microsoft, Nike China, Unilever and Uniqlo. Razorfish’s team of 3000+ experts spans 19 regions, including Australia, China, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Singapore, the UK and the United States.
Razorfish is part of Publicis Groupe. For more information, visit Razorfish.com, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.
Retail Director Europe
Industry Insights features highly accessible and practical content from experts in the marketing services sector providing you with tools and resources to improve your business performance. If you would like to submit a report to the section contact email@example.com