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Fashion News / 02.03.2017

Retail stores vs. digital divide

In 2017 and the near future, consumers will want the best of all worlds physical and virtual. We observe a complex brand landscape is developing where consumers want the latest in technology, more personalised experiences and opportunities to interact in a simple, streamlined process. Lean brands will adapt to changing demands, but they will also have to go much further to keep up with the new digital entrants. These trends signal greater consumer involvement in how products and services engage there needs. Brand managers will have to be less rigid and more open to input from management teams and marketing consultants when considering the internal and external audience source.

 

Here are a few key consumer retail and brand trends for 2017-2018:

Retailers will continue to contend with on-going disruption from the next generation of digital technologies and will prioritise investment in the technologies that will really add value for their customers or increase the efficiency of their goods and services offering. Retail has been through a period of upheaval in the last 15 years. However, in 2017 retailers will need to focus on accelerating change by utilising the services of brand strategists, digital and marketing consultants to help them hone their business models.

rag and bone - New YorkChanging the role of the store to become lean at scale and is now the new norm for retail

How can retailers and brand consultants really help to accelerate change in store and digital formats to become brand ambassadors of retail businesses? While some retailers may have experimented with agile methodologies at the margin of their businesses we believe more management teams will implement lean at scale across their business portfolio responding to structural change in the marketplace whilst improving innovation, responsiveness and the quality of delivering their goods and services offering.

Retailers can innovate to make their stores more interesting and improve ROI

There is no limit to the amount of news of what retailers are doing to create unique, memorable, effective customer experiences. You can read about it, if you follow retail news sources, and you'll see some examples of "How today's retailers are striving to provide unique customer experiences". 

However, many store and mall architects and designers still don’t get it. We often see new stores and for that matter shopping centres open that are architecturally beautiful, and in some cases not so beautiful, but the consultants and the retail management teams do nothing to address the why, by asking the question, "What is the reason for why the store or shopping centre is actually there for and frankly, some retail management teams are also no longer clear what a store concept is there for anymore. So there will be lots of people claiming radical new versions of the store and mall design, but totally under deliver the execution given brand and digital experiential markets. Take one look at the state of the edge of town shopping mall retailing in American and consider why there has been a decline in sales. Then ask yourself the question: Why is this now the case and what is the raison d'etre of the mall and the store?

rag and bone store - New YorkUnderstanding the real value of space - fulfilment, inspiration and friction free transactions

Retail store and shopping malls are being re-imagined and re-aligned for the Generation Y and digital consumers of all ages. A new balance needs to be struck between transaction and fulfilment. We believe the retail experience will increasingly focus on one of three things, inspiration, convenience and value.

Private label and sub brand use will increase for more retailers and shopping centre operators

We are now seeing how big private label is becoming as a defensive and offensive tool in the retail landscape as more retailers and shopping centre management teams turn to marketing and design consultants for their private label brand and sub brand strategy experience.

Retailers will adopt mobile payment solutions in the near future

Executive management teams who don’t implement mobile payment solutions in the near future will fall behind and risk losing out on sales. And if the predictions are any indication, missing out on sales could mean missing out on a lot off cash flow. We think most retailers across all market sectors will utilise the mobile payment function in the near term by adopting whichever type of mobile POS systems that works best for them, whether they be custom mobile payment apps and third-party options such as Apple Pay.

Our internal process of renewal, allows us to continually benchmark and write about the best in class retail trends across the globe.

The images in this article have been taken from the Internet.

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