Goodbye Price Stickers and Catalogs … The Changing Face Of Retail

What marks the change of seasons for you? Is it the weather, or sports, or approaching holidays? Once upon a time, each season was welcomed by the arrival of catalogs. These weren’t just little sales papers, they were big, thick books. In October, kids would check the mailbox daily. The Christmas toy catalog was a coveted prize. But over the years, technology has changed how we discover, browse and purchase. As a result, retail is experiencing massive changes. The following are some examples of the changing face of retail:

  • Pinterest: For those of us who remember catalogs, not much compared to the “big book of toys.” Today, everyone searches online. What is lost with a search is browsing. Pinterest brings back the lost browse. You don’t have to know what you are looking for, just pick a category and enjoy beautiful pins. Today, consumers are spending enormous amount time on Pinterest creating and browsing pins.
  • Price Stickers: Another change is price stickers. Often, they are completely missing. With new technology, though, you don’t have to wait for a price check. Most retailers have “Bar Code” scanners throughout the store.
  • Paper Coupons: Paper coupons are still around, but their days are probably numbered. Many stores now have opt-in smartphone coupons. There are also sites, such as Cellfire, that allow manufacturers coupons to be loaded into store loyalty cards.
  • Loyalty Cards: The loyalty cards seem to be everywhere. They can pile up like a deck of cards. Without them you usually won’t get the best deals. There are applications that allow you to consolidate all these cards. One of these is the site Keyring Thing.
  • Mobile Price Comparison Apps: Big box stores like to advertise “price matching.” Today, mobile apps like RedLaser let consumers compare prices on the spot.
  • Mystery Shoppers: Mystery shoppers are hired by some stores to assess products and customer service. In a survey done by Defaqto Research, “55 % of customers would pay extra to guarantee a better service.”
  • In-Store Wi-Fi: Customers are now tracked through their smartphone. Those “free wi-fi” networks benefit both the store, and the consumer.
  • Digital Storefronts: Online retailers are now looking for ways to have a physical presence. eBay recently debuted shoppable touchscreens & digital storefronts for Sony, Toms And Rebecca Minkoff in SF giving shoppers the ability to buy from these digital storefronts in the Westfield San Francisco Centre.
  • Bridging The Gap: The majority of retailers have both a physical and an online store. Nordstrom is “bridging the gap” between digital and physical stores by showcasing their popular pins on Pinterest in the store.
  • How does a business keep up with all these changes? How can a brand or a retail store keep up with other stores and stay competitive in the marketplace? At Indix, our goal is to help you (brands and retailers) to explore, analyze, and visualize the world’s product related information including assortment, catalog, channels, competition, prices, promotions, news, social feeds, and more in real-time. You can then act on this information to increase your productivity, acquire new customers, and sell more.

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