Online shopping has grown at a massive pace in the past few years. The online market is predicted to hit 4 trillion dollars by the end of the year 2020, and in the US alone is expected to have 300 million online shoppers by 2023. This has created a retail environment to become extremely competitive.
However, retailers do realize that customers require online as well as retail shopping which is still 82% of the UK’s shopping by value. The competition has led the retail landscape to change with companies having to innovate or reinvent themselves to attract more customers continually.
To keep up with the eCommerce industry, innovative retailers are adopting technology to provide customers with an experience that online shopping is not providing. Sephora, for example, is an interactive playground for customers.
Sephora’s current strategy is to blend online, and in-store experience is promoting the brand via social, media and web platforms. To promote retail Sephora launched an app with artificial intelligence feature called Virtual Artist, which uses facial recognition technology to virtually apply makeup to customers helping them be confident with their purchase.
Similarly, other retailers have understood, they need to create a place for their customer to play, resulting in increased sales as a result.
How to engage your audience
The one way to create such a playground in the retail environment is to engage the human senses and use things in your store experience to the retailer’s advantage.
Even before customers enter your store, they’ll be able to see it from afar. The key is to start engaging your audience even before they set a foot inside. One of the ways you can do this is by utilizing the store’s front windows and decorating them in a way that’s provocative and engaging at the same time.
Don’t be afraid to go overboard; use a combination of different shapes, sizes, and colours that would be a treat for yourself customers’ eyes. The more you can visually stimulate your customers, the more opportunity you’re giving your customers to interact with your brand.
Another aspect that your brand can take advantage of is to provide things that your customers can touch while they’re at your store. Doesn’t matter what retail experience you’re offering; from makeup testers to a laptop that your customers can test out, you simply need to provide your customers with the opportunity to interact with something.
It’s also an excellent chance for your brand to put your team at the forefront and give customers a chance to interact with the team that brings your brand to life. What’s even better is for your team to provide customers with samples that your customers would find irresistible to try out.
For brands that particularly capitalize on the sense of smell, such as bakeries, coffee shops, and even perfume shops, it’s crucial to ensure customers are able to smell these fragrances.
Some retailers have scent machines in place to enhance this mood and ensure pleasant smells are spread all around that can engage your audience.
Music has the potential to make or break any retail space. It’s important to choose music that’s appealing to your customer’s ears and is set at the right volume that doesn’t drown out voices. It can help you set the mood and encourage customers to stick around.
Creating an interactive and immersive playground for your audience is bound to create an experience they won’t forget anytime soon. The key is to engage your customer’s senses and tap into whatever they can potentially see and feel. By enhancing the retail space and providing multiple opportunities for your customers to interact with your brand, you can easily captivate your audience.