Do read the entire summary and think about the changes in consumer shopping behaviors and how mobile technology [primarily smart phone related] is affecting shopping patterns. On the retail side, think about all that vacant real estate [remember that we've been considerably overstored]. What will become of it? How will it add value to consumers' lives? What about size? [To that I add, what about connections to local places vs. generic national entities?] And where is innovation happening?
Paco Underhill's suggestions on what retailers might do:
-Recognize Value, Significance, and Value
-Don’t Get Lost In Technology
-Make Financial Offering Consistent With Location/ Customer
-Be Careful To Cater To Local Tastes
I attended the 2006 Envirosell Science of Shopping Conference during which Paco introduced many of these themes. They sound further developed during this event. At that event, I had the opportunity to spend time with Wendy Liebmann from WSL Strategic Retail. Talk about delightful, clued in and totally passionate about retail! She presented at the recent conference and Transworld documented that presentation, too, in Envirosell’s The Science Of Shopping Conference: Wendy Liebmann Presentation.
She says: "nothing will be the same again." Her suggestions:
1. Know your shoppers.
2. Keep them in the store, keep them in the brand.
3. Value your customers' values.
4. Be where your customers want to be, and reach them where they are
5. Create emotional real-estate, not just another store
6. Innovate, innovate, innovate.
Here's more food for thought: according to Retail To Shift by 2015 by Debra Hazel of GlobeSt.com retail will be greatly affected by an overall customer base becoming both younger and older, richer and more cash strapped, tech savvy and not.
At the heart of the retail experience - now more than ever - is delivering a truly memorable customer experience, defined from the customer's perspective. Certainly, helping to put a purchase into a value framework makes sense.
So, how might we enhance that experience, particularly in complex categories [like flooring]?
In high end shopping experiences, a personal shopper plays a role, asking questions, offering suggestions, listening for feedback before making recommendations.
Think about your Amazon.com experience. Do you 'see' similarities? As in suggestions, or product reviews and recommendations? Read Personalization: Putting the “A-Ha!” into Online Shopping; the benefit? "Personalized product recommendations ... create cross-sell and upsell opportunities." Now read Enriching Retail Product Relevance. Recommendations help customers find products more quickly. "If I have a store that's easier to navigate for my customers, I get a higher degree of engagement and loyalty from those customers," and revenue.