The Rise of Experiential Retail
The retail sector has been struggling to keep its revenue up. Brick-and-mortar stores particularly have a hard time to make customers coming back and shop in-store because of online shopping. When price and convenience are compromised, physical stores now have to utilize and leverage their unique advantage: being “physical” to be experiential.
Experiential has been a buzzword for retail. When customers are used to the act of shopping to buy goods, they want to seek another dimension to make the experience better. For example, Farfetch, founded in 2008, is as an e-commerce portal for luxury boutiques. It has successfully positioned itself as the technology provider for brands and has most recently combined technology and fashion to provide a unique in-store experience. The brand places the smart mirrors in store so customers can request different sizes, alternative products or even pay without leaving the dressing room. Another example is an Adidas store in NYC. The sportswear retailer’s fifth avenue location has everything from a juice press to a set of bleachers for customers to watch games on, and also includes a print shop where guests can customize clothing. On one floor, the brand sets up a miniature track, where customers can take a run or get their stride analyzed. On another floor, a turf field with soccer balls, kettlebells, and other workout equipment are available for customers to perform some tests on Addidas gears.
Consumers can’t have these services online but go to brick-and-mortar stores to experience themselves. Going shopping is now more than just buying goods. Reinforcing good emotions in-store is the key to keep customers coming back and make purchases.