All of the best customer experiences I’ve had recently involve product I wanted to buy, an easy-enough way to purchase it, and pricing I could justify. But the differentiator was the people behind it all.
Based on what I saw at MWC (fka Mobile World Congress), the themes, especially as they relate to commerce, can be summed up most succinctly as SPEED.
The technology I like best in retail can be summed up by thinking about the 3 Es:
What enables, expedites, and/or elevates the store experience for tasks a customer doesn’t need a human to perform?
Last month at Verizon, we built an in-store AR use case and rolled it out to thousands of our stores. The activation was tied into Verizon’s holiday campaign and encouraged deeper engagement in the store by prompting customers to search for and “unwrap” exclusive promotional offers as they browsed.
Observations and analysis about Amazon‘s London pop-up from retail consultant Rebecca Smith and me.
On the way to visit the new Amazon 4-star store in Soho, I stumbled upon a Cartier pop-up at 120 Wooster (open until 11/4/18). Unexpectedly, I found both to be about discovery.
To recap, trends hit:
New CPG sales channel
Shift in ad dollars from digital to stores
And those missed:
The “chat” in chat commerce
If more stores can capture people’s attention in similarly-immersive ways, then reserved and tour-guided retail could be part of the definition that I think today’s “retail as entertainment” hypotheses sorely need.
I’m headed to SF for a quick trip to NRFtech to emcee tomorrow morning’s session. Much of this year’s discussion will center on “why tech matters” in retail.
While I’m all for the product-free pop-up, I’m looking for more of a tie between brand and experience than this one.
New and established brands are focusing on tighter assortments.
A new Barneys beauty brand gives customers an effective takeaway.
Earlier this month, I visited Amazon Go and Starbucks Roastery. They’re at opposite ends of the technology/human spectrum.
“The living room is the new dressing room.” - Miki Berardelli, Kidbox CEO
I heard this shortly after telling someone that home is a shopping channel. If a fashion retailer doesn’t have a home strategy, it may be multichannel but I don't think I can say it’s omnichannel.
A number of companies are jumping in to build more distinct CPG brands and subscription programs and to prevent such categories from being forever solidified as commodities. Here are three I'm personally using and loving.
This is the first part in a series I’ll use to explore retail (likely offline, but could be online) that emphasizes product discovery over - or in ways equal to - immediate sales.
If you’ve followed Ron Johnson from Target to Apple to in-and-out of JC Penney, you know his latest effort is as Founder/CEO of Enjoy. All in all, I see Enjoy-type service being a competitive advantage for brands that use it. It’s hard to beat this level of - free - personal service that came at 1 PM on a Sunday following my order at 11 PM Saturday night.
On Friday, I visited the Dyson Demo store. I had read about it and, while I'm not in the market for a vacuum cleaner, what's the point of a retail store anymore if it's not a helpful experience with some form of product trial?*
In the past week, I read two articles that left me thinking about the purpose of physical retail stores
With links to inspiration and #GoodNewsRetail I like.
Based on personal experience, I recommend GiftNow for consumers and retailers alike.
Four brands took an Instagram marketing tactic that’s become stale and created a cross-brand customer experience in Soho
How big a role does brand play in people’s decisions about where to work out? Regardless of its significance now, I think its importance will increase as fitness companies continue to define and amplify their brands.
Someone visiting town for the holidays asked me what retail to see while in New York. I could go on and on (and on) but here's what came to mind first. Please comment or tweet and tell me what you'd add!
By now, we know Alibaba's 11.11 Global Shopping Festival broke all sales records this year. But there are two lesser-discussed parts of 11.11 that are reflective of Alibaba's broader strategy and the company's - and China's - growing influence on global brands.
The best thing about Amazon making shopping boring is that stores - at the least the good ones - are being reborn as shopping experiences. And not just shopping, but education and community, as shown at ADAY in the thumbnail image.
Walmart and Nike both have taken dramatic action recently, but only one company's tale is being told as that of disruption.