When a shopper becomes digitally connected, they are going to
be influenced by whole new set of touchpoints earlier in the process and herein lies opportunity. Read this
recent bazaarvoice.com blog. It describes a valuable scenario that shows the
way grocery shopping could play out in the future. Tara Demarco
does a great job of showing how shoppers could be influenced by direct
communications from manufacturers and bloggers, and even leverage
nutrition filters . . .
of digital media has expanded the communication options available to
retailers, but more importantly, it has created powerful new synergies for more fully integrating sales
promotion and marketing into an effective shopper marketing program. These synergies couldn’t happen at a better time,
since the effectiveness of traditional print media has eroded, creating a growing
“communications gap” between some retailers
and their shoppers. Here are six
calls-out for actions retailers can take to maximize the synergies, and two resources that will help them plot their course.
The addition of in-store GPS to Macy's
iPhone app for its flagship NYC store is one more sign of how shoppers are going to be able to navigate
stores more easily in the future – and be guided to featured products and deals
while they’re in the store, too. The GPS systems, provided by suppliers such as
Meridian and Point Inside, are becoming more accessible to retailers (and
museums and hotels and hospitals).
We think it’s important to keep watching
the idea that shoppers can and will take more ownership and control of
data in the future. In this Baynote blog,
Marti Tedesco explores the
IBM carbon nanotube technology could make micro-personalization possible;
shoppers could wear their data into the store for seamless communication
with retailers in the future. We wondered about shoppers
"micropersonalizing" the data they want to share - by deciding which information they want to supply to which
businesses and retailers. Doc Searls. . .
Toys ‘R Us joins a growing list of retailers who now accept in-store
payment for online orders. We think the shift signals a growing
awareness among retailers of how multi-channel the shopping experience has become. As more and more shoppers seek and expect a
blended experience, the boundaries between online and offline are softening. By accepting
in-store payment for online orders, retailers
Shopkick’s redesign aims to capture the
couch-to-store loop of the path to purchase. The new focus on layout and color
aspires to extend the app’s footprint to include more pre-shopping browsing.
Gamification isn’t gone entirely, but it’s not as prominent as it once was. Sarah Lacey says “Why fix something
that wasn’t broken?” in her Pandodaily review. But we think Shopkick is just
leveraging their strength in creating intent motivation to better serve shoppers' needs by entering the path to
purchase before the store.
The path to purchase in the supermarket increasingly includes smartphone use,
but WHO is using them is what caught our attention. The gap between
millennials and older shoppers is quite small, according to the study featured
in this Supermarket News article. Just 1% to 3% separated millenials from
shoppers ages 30 to 65 across a wide spectrum of activities.
This weekend, Walgreens reached out to a major shopper touchpoint
with the introduction of their new Happy and Healthy Magazine in many
Sunday newspapers. Did you get yours? The glossy magazine will appear
twice a year, and it's heavy on “solutions” – both health and lifestyle -
for a wide variety of shoppers. We think this new retailer magazine is important to note for two reasons.
We like how Charles Gold turns around the perspective on the path-to-purchase in this MENG blog. Gold says we focus too much on the internal - on sales processes, prospects, and tactics. Instead, he argues, we should be talking and thinking about buyers and buying processes.
Can a video game help people make healthier food decisions? What about a dietician in the supermarket? A gaming expert recently joined the faculty of UConn to explore creating gaming environments that ultimately teach health prevention and improvement lessons. For the supermarket-based game, the player’s cart is measured and rated based on the degree to which it contains healthy food. For a perspective on how dieticians in supermarkets can help shoppers improve their health through better food choices, see this pdf from Black Belt Ray Stone.
The path to purchase took a quick digital turn for me at Kohl’s last week when they didn't have the turtle-neck shirts in-store that I wanted. “Try using the kiosk,” the store associate suggested. I did– and I used the coupon that gave us 30% off all purchases that day – and the shipping was free. I felt pretty satisfied. But I wasn’t the only shopper with a problem that turned into a purchase thanks to the kiosk.
The magnitude and rate of change we're involved in today is unprecedented. Mobile devices are permanently changing the fabric of our lives. And speed is changing the way we make decisions. Tom Van Aman has thought longer and harder than almost anyone we know about change, and these are among the topics he brought up when we invited him to a free-wheeling discussion about what's happening today and how it will affect the future.
The Westfield Group, a mall operator whose revenues exceed Google, has launched a laboratory in their downtown San Francisco mall to study how shoppers are using smartphones to merge on-line & off-line worlds as they shop. It’ a great test & learn response to the fast changes that retail is undergoing – and the most practical approach for any business these days, whether new or established.
Will technology and ecommerce allow developing countries to skip the
big box store? Sanjeev Sanyal, a Global Strategist at Deutsche Bank,
argues that this is possible in India -- and that small stores will be
better equipped to compete with online sales than today's big boxes. He
writes in Project Syndicate: "We know from international experience that online shopping undermines
hypermarkets [big boxes like Super Walmart] more than neighborhood stores, which often offer . . ."
Are Touchcodes a game changer? They won the top spot in the WSJ Innovation Awards
because the judges thought so. Instead of the QR code drill - pull up
your camera and snap a picture - with Touchcodes, simply touch your
screen to the printed piece and Voila! The touch connects you to an
offer, game, video, or any other online feature.
The BIGNESS of Big Data
Big Data is entering the mainstream and will affect our lives - and retailing - in many ways. Don't miss this NY Times article from Feb 12, and let us know what you think!