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Retail Trends Why Amazon and E-Commerce Retail are Not a Threat

September 3, 2018   By: Esther Cole

Most people might think that retail is indeed dead. But looking through small details and data show that it isn’t.

Corporate giants such as Amazon and other large e-commerce platforms seem to take a large slice of the pie. But many others are differentiating, creating a unique value proposition, and making the customer shopping experience more worthwhile. There are things that Amazon can’t do, or hasn’t done yet for that matter. Smaller retailers are tapping into this to keep growing and thriving in a highly competitive marketplace.

Offering a Unique Shopping Experience

Other retailers besides Amazon remain competitive by offering a unique shopping experience while still offering affordable quality products. Best Buy allows customers to shop online and pick it up at a store. Brick-and-mortar shops such as HomeGoods, Marshalls and TJ Maxx also offer discount opportunities with “Look what I found!” deals.

According to a PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) survey, 61% of shoppers are staying loyal to their favorite brands. Companies tap into this by incorporating membership or loyalty programs. Exclusive products or events are being tied into business models, growing online communities which create hype for these companies.

Even with the apparent rise of stores closing down, there’s data which show that retail isn’t dying. A study by the global retail research firm IHL confirms that for every company closing a store, there are 2.7 companies opening new stores. And with more stores being opened, it creates more job openings in the economy.

The Retail Industry is Evolving

A PwC report also states that physical stores remain the primary stop for shopping. Nothing can still replace the retail therapy experience. Physical stores allow people to get in, feel and try the products in person, and buy them on the spot instead of waiting for items to be shipped and delivered. There are still products that people prefer to see and experience for themselves first before purchasing, such as fashion, electronics, interior design goods and many more.

PwC also confirms that 70 per cent of consumers check product prices and reviews online, but three quarters of them end up buying in the store where they are checking those prices. Retailers are making an impact by developing their product inventory, sales training, supply chain, and shop operations.

Making the Most Out of Omnichannels

The concept of omnichannel – wherein businesses have a cross-channel business model to improve shopper experience – creates a holistic shopping experience no matter how the customer reaches out. Examples of brands having exemplary omnichannel strategies are Disney, Virgin Atlantic, Chipotle, and Starbucks. Omnichannel innovations show that retail is not dying, but changing with market trends and pushes towards new ventures in the foreseeable future.

And E-commerce giants shouldn’t underestimate the importance of having a physical retail asset that customers go for. Customers now are expecting an omnichannel experience from all retailers wherein there’s a tipping point in convenience, selection and pricing.

It’s no longer just about lowering prices and fast delivery that ensures good revenue, but making the customer shopping experience more fulfilling. This ensures customers coming back for more, growing your brand trust and value, plus creating sustainability in business.

Come join us at the New Retail ’19 at MCEC Melbourne this coming February 2019. You’ll have a full experience and immersion into the future innovations in retail. Grab this chance and get early bird discounts here.

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