Retailers, struggling to connect with their customers, have been trialling new technologies to blend in-store and digital experiences.
Interactive kiosks, mobile-friendly websites and transactional apps have become the norm. Historically, the first three rules of retail were always – “location, location, location”.
Consultants pulled out that catch phrase at every opportunity, telling retailers that the only way to succeed was to secure the best spot.
Then the internet happened, which facilitated the growth of online shopping.
Retailers soon realised that customers could reach them online, no matter where they were located.
By 2010, stores like Target and David Jones moved to set up their online platform, positioning themselves as a true “multi-channel retailer”, despite offering only about 1,500 products online.
Since retailers initially operated their online and physical stores as separate entities, customer demand for a seamless shopping experience across all channels and touch points was not being met.
By 2015, terms like “seamless experience” and “omni-channel” emerged in retail boardrooms.
An omni-channel strategy enabled retailers to offer a consistent experience, brand message and transactional functionality...
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