Imagine the feeling you have when someone at a store you frequent remembers your name. It feels good. That’s the level of service national chains will need to bring to the table. It will have to be all about you, as it should be.
I wrote about what it will take for retailers to achieve that level of customer satisfaction back in June:
The relationship between company and client has never been more valuable. And Jeff Bezos understands this. In Bezos’ world, you will not be a pest. You will be that valued guest and you will be treated with the service you want.
Do you want a personal shopping assistant? You got it.
Do you want the same things as the last time you were here? Let me get them for you while you choose your produce.
Want me to get out of your way? You don’t need to say a word. We already know that.
Unless old-line retailers wake-up to the fact that this is about the C-U-S-T-O-M-E-R, they will continue to see Bezos eat their lunch, whether it’s books or bananas. And he’ll do it for less with my Bezos Law.
It seems that retailers, both e-commerce and brick and mortar are getting the picture. It’s about the experience. Daniel Freedman, co-founder of BurnAlong, writes:
The future of retail will be filled with more Disney -park experiences. Between an app and a digital wristband, you’ll be able to pay, skip lines and make reservations. The unpleasant parts of in-person shopping—for instance, waiting in line to pay—are on their way out. Technology will adapt what you see to your preferences. People with allergies will use personal screens that will guide them to see only what they can eat.
Online shopping will continue to grow—especially for items people would rather not waste time buying in person, like tissues or car parts. The internet makes it possible to experience events people prefer to see up-close but can’t attend, such as concerts or sporting events. But physically going to a site remains many Americans’ first choice. People cherish being able to touch and choose groceries or seeing their favorite team up close.
Some entrepreneurs, such as Elon Musk, have focused on finding the most efficient ways to take people places: locally with Tesla’s electric cars, between cities with Hyperloop, and beyond Earth with SpaceX. Mr. Musk doesn’t seem particularly interested in giving consumers experiences they can enjoy while sitting on the couch.
Perhaps the greatest proof of the value of in-person interactions comes from venture capitalists. They’re still largely clustered in one location, Silicon Valley. Most prefer to invest in local companies. At worst, they might settle for a city with direct flights to San Francisco. Ask them why and they’ll tell you it’s because they like to keep up with founders and teams face-to-face. Video technology, virtual reality and augmented reality haven’t changed that.
Read more here.