Ahead of this week's webinar, The Future of Retail, we wanted to get to know our speakers a little better. Webinar host, Blend Media's Head of Partnerships, Laura Helm asks our panel what the future of retail means to them.
Amrita Maria, Business Development at Obsess
The future of retail will be a seamless connection with the online customer journey. With the accelerated trend of closing physical retail locations and customers preferring to shop online, virtual stores will increasingly become a new sales channel for retailers – bringing their in-store experience accessible and shoppable from anywhere at any time – thereby broadening the audience and increasing the ROI.
Ben Walton, Digital and Ecommerce, the7stars
With significant changes in consumer behaviour and increasingly less reasons to visit the high street due to the accelerated closure of physical stores, we will see a shift in the dynamics of online and physical retail. Elements traditionally associated with shopping in physical stores will be displaced, as online shopping will become about entertainment, discovery, and inspiration. Whilst physical stores will be an extension of that online experience, they will play a bigger role in the operational side of e-commerce, rethinking layouts to better manage returns, click and collect and, in some cases, mini-warehouses so goods can be delivered quicker and more effectively, locally.
Marco Delvai, XR Strategic Consultant
The future of retail is unquestionably traced: e-commerce will play an even bigger role for several categories of consumer goods (from groceries to fashion, from appliance to furniture etc) and the role played by the broader spectrum of Extended Reality (XR) technologies (from 3D item visualisation down to fully integrated Augmented Reality (AR) experiences complementing and enhancing the user experience on the retailer's owned & operated app) will be to:
1. Reduce returns (and so increase the overall bottom line of retailers e-commerce operation)
2. Improve the overall experience and increase time spent online (virtual try-ons, AR storefronts etc)
3. Unlock new revenues with 100% digital product categories (NFT) that don't require physical manufacturing
4. Deeply rethink the role of the physical retail space: focus on experience, reduction in number of outlets
To hear more from our speaks about the future of retail, from Virtual Try-On, to AR-powered in-store experiences that excite and delight customers, to holographic shop assistants in your living room, register for our webinar. And if you would like to discuss an AR, VR or 3D project, please get in touch.