ARTICLES — January 31, 2020

The Retail Sector is Evolving, and It Goes Beyond Fulfilling Consumer Needs

The retail industry is having a major transformation in eCommerce and brick-and-mortar. The age of inventory-led retail is ending, and the shift toward brand identity and customer experience is rising. Technological and social shifts shape the way global consumers buy things, even what they buy. These shifts in retail are less of a sudden change and more of a progressive, gradual change. Staying relevant and getting ahead in this environment requires keeping up with what’s trending in retail strategies. Here is a list of retail business trends that will carry over in 2020.

Experience Over Shelf Space

Experience isn’t a completely brand-new idea, but it is something that has evolved from idea to execution tremendously in 2019, and the idea that consumers are driven by experiences is pushing the limits of retailers. In order to enable experiences, companies are looking for ways to bring the store into our homes, and our homes into the store. In 2020, we’ll see companies focusing on experience, and brands connecting themselves with consumers in innovative ways.

The Return of Omnichannel

The term “omnichannel” is still bandied around in retail circles because it is actually the future of the industry: consumers no longer distinguish between online and offline shopping. A Harvard Business Review report disclosed that 73% of shoppers used multiple channels to discover and buy products. For example, the rapidly maturing AR and VR technologies can be used to augment the shopping experience in a store. Whatever channel they use, consumers demand the same experience and information they need. This is why retailers should think twice before differentiating between online and offline.

More Creative Ways of Taking Online Brands Offline

Traditional showrooms are usually huge and quite expensive to manage. In keeping with the experience-based retail trend, countless eCommerce companies increasingly want to give shoppers a way to see products in person, like pop-ups or glamourous flagship stores. One of the most unique ways to do this has implemented by Outer, a Santa Monica-based furniture company. In order to reduce the showroom maintenance fees, Outer asks customers to apply to volunteer their backyards as showrooms so shoppers can see the products in a real home setting. In exchange, Outer offers a discount on furniture and a flat fee per visitor.

Giving Customers More Ways to Pay

If you haven’t integrated digital wallet technology into your business model, now is the right time to do it. According to market research firm Statista, digital payment transactions will grow more than 8% annually until 2023. It would be wise to stay ahead of this trend by taking advantage of all the business benefits of digital wallet technology, such as integrating loyalty programs which is a reliable way to stay connected to customers.

Reducing Operational Costs by Utilizing Asset Monitoring Solution

Managing retail company assets requires huge operational costs. In order to reduce this, more and more companies are going to embrace a monitoring solution. Telkomsel Asset Performance Management helps companies monitor their assets’ location, GPS jamming, environment (light and humidity), tampering, tilt position, and sensor/gateway battery level. The data will be gathered automatically by provided sensors, including real-time alerts, predictive analytics, automatic reporting, and data insights. With this IoT technology, retail companies can reduce operational costs by getting assets’ conditions in real-time, optimizing asset usage hours, even identifying anomalies from alerts and changes in trends.

The retail industry is still alive and getting better. With experiences continuing to gain momentum and traditional commodity retail being marginalized, the future belongs to retail companies that prioritize experiences in the store, online and everything in between. Visit https://telkomseliot.com/ to find out how your retail business can stay ahead.

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