The demand for the traditional setup of brick-and-mortar retail has slowly declined due to the changing times. With the advancement of technology and the emergence of the worldwide pandemic, consumers are forced to turn to online shopping. Moreover, new consumer behavior and purchasing practices brought about by the current pandemic will surely continue even after this is over.
It is predicted that by 2040, about 95% of consumer purchases will be done online. One reason for this is that most people have found e-commerce a more convenient and comfortable way to shop. Despite the decline of brick-and-mortar retail shopping, this method of purchasing products is far from ending.
In this digital age, retailers will have to adjust and convert to the current marketing trends to bring in more profit for their businesses. Integrating technology into business strategies can be a way to cope with the changes that are present nowadays. Here are some of the ways you can use technology to your advantage.
Utilize technology as a tool
Make the best out of technology by connecting and engaging with current and potential customers online. Most people would prefer to know as much information about the product they are thinking of buying online or offline. What you can do as a retailer is to make your products accessible on every possible platform you can think of. Furthermore, with the use of technology, customers can easily book appointments and consultations in-person to try out and see your products in person. Similarly, loyal customers can subscribe or get notifications for any promos, coupons, and exclusive information about the products and services you offer.
Another big trend for retail businesses is to make use of Augmented and Virtual Reality. These types of technology can now cater to customer’s satisfaction by enabling them to browse through and try on products without needing to show up in-person. Through AR and VR, customers can try on lipstick shades or different clothing articles virtually to see how they look like when they put them on. Overall, it makes customers’ shopping experience interesting and efficient at the same time.
Form communities for your customers
Building a community where your customers can be updated and involved with your brand is way easier online than forming an actual community through physical meetings and gatherings. Communities can conveniently be formed through Facebook pages or Discord servers so that your customers can keep up with the latest releases and promos that your brand has.
Additionally, community members can talk amongst themselves and help each other by recommending and reviewing their favorite products from your brand. With communities like these, consumers have the freedom to talk about any of the products that they might be eyeing, from oven toasters to smart tower heaters. Honest and reliable information and details about an item can now easily be accessed by anyone. These communities can bring in more potential shoppers at the end of the day and boost your brand’s sales.
Make digital payment options available
One of the struggles that consumers experience when shopping in physical stores is the long lines to check out items. More people prefer to shop online because ordering and paying for products can be done in less than a second. With this in mind, it would be beneficial for your business to consider having the option to pay for your products digitally. Digital wallets like Google Pay and Apple Pay can enable shoppers to pay with just a click of their mobile phones. Lengthy wait times will no longer be a problem since customers will no longer hold up the line by taking the time to pull out their wallets, count their money, and wait for the cashier to finish the entire process.
Ultimately, technology has its pros and cons for brick-and-mortar retail businesses. Integrating these unfamiliar changes to your brand can give birth to multiple risks and challenges for your business. The most vital thing to remember is taking the leap and focusing on effectively using the benefits of technology to boost your customers’ satisfaction and increase your products’ profitability.