The threat of e-commerce is real. In fact, more than 5,500 retail shops have already closed down in the UK. More grocery shoppers are buying products online over the last 12 months. By 2021, over 45 million of the population will already be into e-commerce.
These data are enough to worry and frighten brick-and-mortar retailers. What they do not know is it does not have to be that way. It is a matter of knowing how consumers want to shop, then modifying their strategies to fit the trends.
How UK Consumers Want to Shop
About five to seven years ago, UK consumers would shop this way: They enter a store to buy the product they need. They search for it, proceed to the counter, and swipe their credit or debit card. They head out and are happy with their purchase. It is that simple.
Today, times have changed, and the Westfield report best illustrates that. According to it, UK shoppers are not only paying attention to the retail trends, but are also adopting them.
For one, they want a comprehensive sensory in-store experience. They are no longer satisfied with seeing and touching things. They want their shopping to be as enriching and stimulating as possible. In other words, they are searching for a much deeper interaction with the people and the product.
The New Way to Shop
One of the most popular marketing technologies is NFC. Many companies today such as NFC Direct help businesses integrate this simple, but powerful system in their branding.
NFC stands for near-field communication. It uses short-wave signals to transfer information or payment from a device with an NFC chip to another that can read or accept the cashless payment.
In retail, NFCs can help enhance the in-store experience in many ways. Articles may come with an NFC tag that contains product information customers cannot know from the get-go. For example, it may list down other colours and sizes available of a particular shoe. The store can further personalise the data by offering suggestions. It is also possible for the users to hasten the buying process, as they can purchase the product without having to go to the counter.
NFCs can also be useful post-sales. It can push personalised rewards, incentives, and information, thereby increasing brand loyalty and engagement.
Why do some brick-and-mortar brands survive while others do not? One of the possible explanations is the lack of innovation. By choosing the right technology, it can save a business money while growing it continuously.