Why human interaction will differentiate retail experiences, not touchscreens

March 21, 2018

From the (now humble) touchscreen to augmented reality; consumers want greater levels of in-store interactivity. At least that’s the received opinion.

So it was refreshing to hear Ross Bailey, the founder of Appear Here, at this year’s Shop Talk conference in Las Vegas suggest that where possible, technology should be hidden from view, and instead be focused on making in-store associates perform in a more engaging and productive way.

Ok, so I get that it was a conference “sound-bite” and not intended as an industry-wide hypothesis, but it’s a useful reminder that as the role of the physical store evolves to become an experiential extension of the brand – it’s human interaction that will help to differentiate retail experiences, not touchscreens.

Investment in your store associates is more important than ever.

Consumer shopping journeys now routinely hop between your digital channels and your physical stores. The difference is that online (through your website or social feeds), it’s easier to control your brand message. It’s perfectly curated.

However, in-store, it’s up to your store associates to maintain this brand consistency. That’s why empowering them with the right information, at the right time, is so important. More than ever before, they are your front-line brand ambassadors – tasked with ensuring that the brand expectations you’ve worked hard to set through your digital experiences are upheld in the physical world.

Unfortunately, many brands are still reliant on legacy intranet tools, or even email, to share retail operations and brand information across their retail network – from own stores, to franchise and even wholesale partners. That’s just not going to cut-it anymore.

If you’re struggling to build brand advocacy across your in-store teams, book a demo of Concrete Publish or Concrete Tasks below– it’s the industry’s most trusted portal solution for creating a single source of truth for your brand. Built for retail, it overcomes the limitations of trying to share important content through email or shared drives, where it quickly becomes out-of-date, or remains hidden from view from the teams that need it most.

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