This is an intergalactic emergency…” – Buzz Lightyear, Toy Story
I’ll admit, I’m a digital native. When I think about shopping, my mind goes online first - if not to buy, at least to check reviews and prices. But with my son’s first birthday quickly approaching, I decided to brave the traffic and head to a Toys ‘R Us store.
I had no idea what to buy. I was paralyzed by choice and I didn’t know which toys were better than others, which prices were justified, and which were really age appropriate. After settling on a truck, I stood in a line with two other people - 30 minutes after grabbing the truck, I finally paid and left. I’ll never go back. That hour-long trip to buy a $25 toy truck made it painfully clear why so many brick-and-mortar retailers are having trouble keeping up with the Amazons of the world.
As more people turn to their smartphones to aid in their shopping experiences, brick-and-mortar must hop on the innovation train if they are going to convince shoppers that there is some redeeming value to the idea of getting into the car and driving to a store.
Here are three ways retailers can marry physical and digital to make shopping in-store a rewarding experience: