Most consumers today have a blurred connection between online and offline shopping. Most of the world is digital both in the stores and on the internet, so whether you actually visit the store or shop online, you are gaining a digital experience.
When you visit the large retail stores today, you have Wi-Fi available along with digital displays, and some even offer virtual dressing rooms and links to events in other locations. Technology and consumer savvy retail store owners have restructured our shopping world.
With the rise of the Millennials and Generation Z, shopping online has seen a huge boost. Amazon, Google Shopping, and many other huge e-commerce sites, offer what these individuals crave, instant gratification.
In decades gone by it was once believed that the store associates knew more about their products and services than the consumer. That is no longer the case with financially conscience shoppers of today, where over eighty percent will do research online before spending one penny on any product or service offered.
The new age of shoppers for this decade are much more environmentally friendly than those of decades gone by, and that means less driving of gas guzzling vehicles and huge industrial sized filth spewing shopping malls. Shopping today is all about ease of access that is less harmful to the environment, so we are currently seeing a rise in strip malls.
Strip malls or outdoor malls are becoming popular, and they are being placed in locations that are easy to get to by bike or walking. They also have everything from hardware stores to Laundromats available to their consumers.
Map It Out
With mobile e-commerce becoming huge, we expect to see when we check out a specific store certain elements in their apps and displays online that will drive us to their doors. Smart consumer retail stores should provide directions to nearest store, what aisle the item or service is located in and the cost should be the same both in store and online.
There also should be an incentive to lure consumers to the store and by adding stock quantities and visuals of the actual product and placement in the store are great ways to accomplish this. Most retailers will also place other products and services that people bought during their shopping experience which is helpful as well.
The way we shop today is completely different than even a decade ago, and it continues to reshape itself even as we speak. The younger generation, who is currently the largest pool of consumers and make up over a quarter of the retail percentage, are more financially and environmentally conscience which continues to drive the retail world to continuously change and re-structure their marketing and physical presence to meet this demand.