As we head into the new year, 2020 is poised to be the year of engaging in-store experiences.
Today’s multichannel consumers demand immersive in-store experiences that allow them to interact with products and services. It’s an experience they can’t replicate online, and it helps to build stronger relationships with their favorite retailers in-person.
As 22% of consumers rate the in-store experience as “excellent,” according to our third annual Modern Consumer Research Report, how can retailers provide exceptional in-store experiences for their customers?
We spoke with Karen Wickett, regional retail market manager, and Liz Schultz, retail customer experience leader, of Room & Board, a leading retailer of modern furniture and home decor. Wickett and Schultz explained how Room & Board plans to evolve its in-store experiences and drive more foot traffic in the new decade.
With about a week left in 2019, what do you see as the biggest trend impacting retail in 2020?
Wickett: Personalization of the customer experience continues to be a strong trend as customers seek experiences that connect them with our brand in ways beyond simply a transaction. We’re seeing incredible value for our customers in meaningful showroom events, customizable products, and engaging store presentations.
Driving foot traffic is incredibly important for retailers to build stronger customer relationships. How are you planning to increase in-store traffic in the new year?
Schultz: Inviting customers to our showroom for design appointments through JRNI is an exciting part of our showroom engagement plans for 2020. While we’ve always offered free design services, we’re excited for the opportunity to make it easy for the customer to make an appointment.
Additionally, we want to welcome customers to visit our showrooms often by expanding our home décor options, infusing seasonality in product and presentation, and hosting smaller localized events.
When consumers shop in-store, they want to receive experiences that make their in-person journeys worthwhile. Why are in-store experiences so important in retail?
Wickett: For Room & Board, our showrooms have always been designed for exceptional customer experiences. Inspirational, tactile, and designed for immersing oneself in our product and aesthetic, the showroom experience invites customers to explore our collection and partner with one of our knowledgeable Design Associates on projects of any size.
For retailers to be successful today, they must bridge the digital-to-physical divide and use technology to bring consumers in-store. Once consumers are in-store, how does technology help to enhance their overall experience?
Schultz: Technology enhances our ability to connect the customer with the right information at the right time. Being able to capture product selections, show customers additional options, and put the customer in the driver’s seat if they’re not ready to transact. Technology allows us to support a seamless experience before, during, and after the shopping experience.