Fashion has always been one of the most transgressive and experimental retail sectors.
Now, thanks to the maturity of technology, it is transforming the in-store shopping experience once again.
It is no news that technology has long been fantasising about Retail and vice versa. Until recently, this utopia was reserved for flagships, the only formats that justified the spectacular nature -and cost- of the customised developments required, since every technological solution that was installed was a novelty.
But new technologies have matured through several years of testing and the evolution of “one-shots” (one-off projects) that hatched in the flagship stores. In other words, technology has finally established itself in the industry, and that means scalability and lower costs.
Moreover, it so happens that much of this development has taken place in the fashion industry and the first brands that invested in phygitalising their stores are about to embark on a new stage: the transformation of the in-store experience through this technology that is finally scalable.
Technologies that will transform the shopper experience in a fashion store
The first to be standardised. Systems that coordinate the screens of all the brand or distributor’s points-of-sale telematically and centrally.
2. Integrated virtual assistants
Customers seek personalised attention and technology can help a lot in this regard, as it will improve customer service.
Through interactive points from which the user can send queries or requests to store staff without having to look for them, thereby reducing processes and attention times for a great (and more profitable) experience.
3. Totems with digital catalogue
The second most frequently asked question to store staff after “Do you have my size?” is probably: “What about in other stores? Two requests of relative value, especially when we can solve them through digital totems (touch screens with integrated scanners) that give access to the brand’s online catalogue.
And in the process, we can activate offers and moments of cross-selling and up-selling much more easily.
4. Robotised Click&Collect
The last mile in Retail is one of the next problems to be solved for many brands and distributors. Home delivery is expensive, in-store delivery by staff is hugely inefficient and lockers quickly become saturated.
But what if the latter were not the case?
The robotisation of Click & Collect is geared to overcome the limitations of lockers, transforming them into automated warehouses, which we covered more extensively in this article.
5. Virtual navigation: “store mode”
Zara has broken the mould this year by surprisingly activating the “store mode” of its app, connecting the stock of its points-of-sale with users’ mobile phones in real-time and allowing them to reserve garments available for collection in 30 minutes.
A pilot project that has been launched in less than 30 stores (for now).
The app also allows customers to book a fitting room and locate the garments in the store. It is a perfect interpretation of the customer journey inside the store to which they have added a layer of digitalisation to resolve all the “pain points”.
6. Digital tags
E-ink labellers have finally reached their definitive form -or almost, as there is always room for surprises- by integrating the alarm system and the price tag in one device.
A huge time-saver for staff, especially during the sales season, which also helps to eliminate the need to print each tag with RFID chips to facilitate stocktaking.
7. Digital mannequins
Visual merchandising will always be a store staple, but physical mannequins take up space, and we can’t put all the outfits we have in the store, but what if we could create inspirational murals with which the consumer could interact and view all the looks proposed by the brand in real size with just a few gestures? What if we could add gender recognition cameras to them to add a layer of AI and personalise the looks?
8. Virtual and augmented reality
Shopping is a great pastime for a large part of the population. Something that goes beyond shopping and becomes pure entertainment for millions of people. And that, moreover, is still the exclusive domain of Retail.
But in the absence of a digital substitute, doesn’t it make perfect sense to “augment” it?
Some of the advantages that augmented and virtual reality can bring to fashion retail are to entertain the shopper by leveraging the brand or retailer’s app, thereby increasing the number of both physical and digital interactions, or to offer them the chance to try on products for which they cannot find a size or for which there is no stock at that moment.
9. Advanced store analytics
Or Retail Analytics. In essence, it consists of making a full interpretation of everything that happens in the fashion store and its whys and wherefores. The quantity and quality of the data will depend on the sensor system we install and the dashboards we design. From profiling and geolocation of users visiting our outlets to heat mapping and consumer interest, nowadays it is possible to measure almost everything. “Why don’t we do it?” is the only question that remains unanswered.
If you wish to implement any of these technologies to transform your customers’ experience in your fashion Retail business into a unique, impactful, and technological experience, contact us.