The retail industry is one of the oldest, yet one of the most innovative sectors in our marketplace today. Now, more than ever, we’re seeing the creative integration of cutting-edge technology and shopping experiences. Need a last-minute item for your dinner on Saturday? Voice command Alexa to order it for you online. Want to try out an outfit without waiting in line for the dressing rooms, better yet- without even stepping foot in a store? A little augmented reality is on your side.
Here are the top trends you’ll see in retail for the new year:
Voice Command Buying
Admit it, we all wanted our own genie in a bottle when we first watched Aladdin. Well, thanks to technology in the 21st century, you can have your own for under $200!
Amazon’s Alexa and the Google Home make it even easier to shop from the comfort of your own home. All you need to do is tinker with the settings and turn on ‘Voice Purchasing’, this will connect to your Amazon cart and you can place orders or reorder an item with a PIN number that locks and unlocks the feature. With Google Home, you can purchase items on Google Express by saying “order item” and responding to the following prompts.
Buying Directly Through Social Media Platforms
You’ve probably already seen a little shopping bag icon during those evening Instagram scrolls, but do you know what they’re for?
Pinterest and Instagram are amongst the first to debut these shoppable pins and pictures. If you see something that catches your eye on Pinterest and want to purchase it right away, it’s now possible with the click of a button with “Shop the Look”. These will appear as dots on clothing, accessories, and more. Instagram will tell viewers the price through tags that are linked to your business Facebook Catalog.
Augmented Reality Experiences
Augmented reality is the most exciting trend for next year, as it’s becoming more accessible through the usage of apps one can download onto their smartphones. These ‘experiences’ will better connect the customer to the product.
This technology is already being integrated with home decor and furniture shopping. IKEA has already launched their app, IKEA PLACE, where users can use their phones to see how a piece of furniture will fit in their home. IKEA says this will help their customers envision how their rooms will look before they come into the store to purchase their brand, new furniture.
In the fast world of fashion, augmented reality will allow on-the-fence customers to make a purchasing decision by simply seeing an outfit in motion in front of them. Global Spanish retailer, Zara, released a mobile AR app “Shop the Look” where users can point their phones and see a model walk onto their screen.
Experiential marketing events are not new. However, as spending is starting to increase in the Millennial and Gen Z markets, brands must change their own dynamics in order to appeal to these types of consumers. Engaging a strategy that invites new fans or longtime customers will best show how companies can stand apart from others in deeply competitive markets.
Many experiential marketers tie an entire branded experience campaign to be easily recognizable on social media. They create hashtags, develop long-lasting collaborations, as well as launch easy ‘selfie’ moments for those who wish to indulge in their experiences for their followers.
Need to stand out for the new year? Consult with a digital marketing agency today to see where your business can adapt to the dynamic technologies and trends of 2019. They will analyze the strengths your company has and how to better brand your campaigns so that you can connect with your customers.