I’m an individual who considers the mall my happy place, it gives me a feeling of disconnection from the stress of daily life and I like that it regularly changes. If my visit is merely to check out the latest trends, then I visit stores that I am familiar with.
I notice details that maybe, some people are oblivious to such as the temperature, the scents, and the overall feel that would leave a lasting impression. Some stores make me feel better than the others, that’s a fact. From the attention given by the staff, down to the actual collection and options spread in front me (the feels!), which I would call THE total shopping experience!
It is because of the thrill of the overall experience that most of us still go to the malls despite the influx of online shopping sites where we can purchase the same items for the same prices with just a single click in the comfort and safety of our own homes. And it is for this reason as well that stores really have to step up their game – and the quest is on for the best store that can provide all the thrills and frills that online shopping will never have.
The pandemic was led by technology, with our phones being the space where we spent most of our time. And now it is the perfect moment to ask ourselves – is brick and mortar still relevant?
What is Brick and Mortar?
A brick and mortar store is a business or retail outlet with at least one physical location, it basically refers to the traditional stores that you can find in your favorite shopping mall. When e-commerce platforms became the normal, we thought that it was the end of physical stores but turns out that they in fact complemented one another. Shoppers now go online to do research but will go to a physical location – a brick and mortar store – to make the actual purchase.
Now that we know what brick and mortar is and we are sure that it is still relevant, it’s important to discuss our current state. We spent many months indoors in fear of being in close proximity with others, and when we do go out, we practice social distancing and there are 2 things that this has brought about:
- People still proceed with caution and would rather shop online and avoid the malls
- People being people craving for normalcy and therefore go out and try to go about the same before the pandemic – and yes, it includes shopping!
How can we achieve the best shopping experience?
- Offer a personal experience so the customers get what’s right for them, not just what’s on sale.
- Think of displays as opportunities for cross-selling, show how seemingly unrelated items work together.
- Do what a chatbot cannot do, remove the frustrations from shoppers’ lives in a human way.
- Create a memorable experience instead of seeming like a warehouse of stuff.
We are witnessing the revolution of retail and it is our time to be out there and drink it all in. People need to get the same feeling when they visit both your retail space AND your website, so it is our job to create a link between the two. How? By making a good use of the technology that is now available, with smart displays being our first choice.
The Perch interactive display offers information relevant for the customers that allows them to learn more from their devices, but gives them the chance to touch and feel the products before purchasing them.
It’s time for brick and mortar to revamp and own its strength, to take advantage of the immediacy customers are looking for, and benefit from the personal connections that can only be created inside the store.