5 Trends That Will Shape Digital Services In 2013 (and therefore retail)

1671418-inline-tesco-virtual-store-01Now we entered the omni channel world in retail it is impossible to ignore the digital trends. Olof Schybergson of the design firm Fjord named 5 key trends that have to be watched in 2013 and what to do. The last one is even solitarily dedicated to retail. 

1. DAWN OF THE “PERSONAL ECOSYSTEM” 

Connected objects start to take their place–right by your side.

2. K.I.S.S. (KEEP IT SIMPLE, STUPID)

Simplicity has a long track record of success and disruption. How good old-fashioned K.I.S.S. principles are making a comeback.  

3. ACCESS WILL SUPPLANT OWNERSHIP

What does it mean to own something in the digital age? As the focus shifts from ownership to access. 

4. I BELONG TO ME

How to survive if you find yourself on the personal data battlefield.

5. A PERSONAL SHOPPER FOR EVERYBODY

The coming revolution in retail

Personalization is nothing new in the digital world, but in the world of retail, users often find that comparatively few services actually meet their needs. This is likely to change in 2013, as the online and offline retail environments merge, creating a more holistic and immersive customer experience.

A statistic to strike fear into the heart of any retailer: Almost half of U.S. smartphone users have used their devices in-store, and more than half of those have gone on to abandon their in-store purchase. For smartphone users, the distinction between online and in-store shopping has all but disappeared.

The key to retail success lies in creating experiences that make customers feel better. A shopping experience that feels smarter or easier can be more valuable for many customers than simply getting the best deal. Key factors that ensure success are increasingly going to be based on recognition, recommendation, follow-through, and support. Services like Intuit GoPayment and PayPal Here (both of which Fjord helped to design) are already revolutionizing commerce for small retailers by simplifying payment, and the next natural step is to offer digital customer relationship management for these small merchants.

Shop staff will increasingly be equipped with tablets or smartphones to deliver improved individual service, and opt-in location-based services will help customers find precisely what they’re looking for, when they’re looking to buy, and will enable them to pay on the spot without queuing. Virtual shops, in other words, will also take hold in the physical world.

Suggestions for the shopping services of 2013:

• Design commerce services that make use of smartphone sensors and contextual data–camera, gyroscope, time of day, and location.

• Design innovative and simple solutions for small merchants. This is a big group of merchants, yet they are not digitally savvy at all. Inventory management, customer relationships, loyalty solutions, digital storefronts–these can be life-changing services for small retailers.

• Re-imagine the boring things and make them engaging. As PayPal and Square have shown, even something as painful as paying can be pretty cool.

read the rest here

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