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Benchmarking the future
| February 6, 2018
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Article | February 11, 2020
As we come off another holiday season, it's worth taking a look at how the customer journey has changed, the role retail plays in the journey and what 2020 holds for innovative brands and retailers alike. Only a small minority of consumers these days are brand loyal according to a recent McKinsey report. Most consumers prefer to be in "shopping around" mode instead. Add to that the waning influence of TV advertising. Against this backdrop, it's clear that brand and retail marketers are challenged and need to change up their game. In a world in which TV advertising has lost much of its power, innovative retailers and brands have an opportunity to command consumers' attention through integrated marketing initiatives that include digital experiences and product sampling.
For consumers, shopping can either be an exciting experience or a downright stressful one. Finding enough time to shop for the perfect gift or merely everyday staples while attempting to manage the challenges of work, family and everyday life can undoubtedly add to stress levels. Considering all of the expectations and obligations that exist within a consumer’s life, it’s critical for retailers to be respectful of their time when they have so little to spare. It's no secret that consumers’ choices on how, where and when they buy are dramatically redefining the retail industry as we know it. In order to stay relevant and top of mind for consumers, retailers must work to deliver the best possible shopping experience. Perhaps the strongest demonstration of value a retailer can provide to a consumer isn’t just better pricing or a more engaging environment, but instead to give back something their consumers value even more: time.
Every industry has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, with governments implementing various measures in a bid to slow the spread of the virus. This means consumers have had to adapt their behaviour, which in turn is reflected within the economy. As many people are furloughed and many stores have had to implement temporary closures, data shows that people are buying less, which has had a direct impact on the retail industry.
The advance of Amazon’s cashierless technology is not a new story to the retail beat as of 2020. Since the first AmazonGo retail location opened in early 2018 with its much-hyped walk-in, walk out retail technology designed to make the line at checkout a thing of the past, Amazon has been slowly but surely expanding the technology’s footprint there are now 26 Go stores in operation in the U.S. with new openings scheduled for New York, Chicago, Seattle and San Francisco on the agenda for his year. And, as of reports two weeks ago, cashierless tech is breaking out of the small footprint, convenience store-esque locations that are Amazon Go stores. As of the end of February, Amazon announced the tech was making its full-fledged grocery debut in the form of Amazon Go Grocery stores.
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