Top Three Tech Trends Shaping Retail In 2018
The Future of E-commerce And Retail In the Year to Come
It's hard to imagine that while years ago we would have been highly adversed to sharing our credit card details online, it has become second nature to us as we engage in online transactions almost everyday. As we customers increasingly turned to the web for services and technology continues to enhance online user experience, the drawbacks of not having a physical storefront for businesses is fast being eroded away. With that in mind, here are the top three tech trends poised to continue redefining our shopping and e-commerce experience in the year ahead.
While AR has been around for many years, we will start seeing greater mass consumer uptake in the year to come as smartphone integration continues to rise globally. The consulting firm Digi-Capital forecasts at least 900 million AR-enabled smartphones to enter the market by the end of 2018. These technologies will help retailers enhance the shopping experience online by offering consumers a seamless, more true-to-life experience.
Furniture and home goods giants, Ikea and Anthropologie, have been one of the first major partners with Apple, using the ARkit to add features to their apps whereby furniture can be placed in your own respective room to get a feel for what it will look like in real life. Even global beauty brands such as L’Oreal’s Makeup Genius app, for instance, which uses AR to let users virtually try-on beauty products on their phones. The app has been highly received with more than 20 million downloads so far, according to Forbes. Others brands including Sephora, Charlotte Tilbury and Rimmel have followed suit.
Social Media the New Storefront
The uses of social media seem to be constantly evolving has become a necessity in virtually every business as a branding and promotional tool. As one of the most convenient and cheapest means of communication, social media apps such as Instagram allow anyone to start exchange goods and services at zero operation cost that a traditional brick-and-mortar shop would require. Combined this trend with digital influencers and bloggers being in vogue, high-end labels and brands will continue being in touch with the audience through these apps. Influential marketing helps brands create a buzz around their products and services and will continue to do so.
Mass Personalised Retail
The ever-growing digital engagement of consumers, both online and in stores is facilitating the compilation of data on individual customers’ tastes and preferences as well as shopping behaviour. With the growing desire for more personalisation in retail businesses will increasingly engage in analytical and self-learning systems in future to offer more informed recommendations and optimise user experience.