The Disruptive Forces that Changed the Customer in Retail

In our Deliverable 2  you watched a YouTube video of each member of the group sharing feedback on research conducted on each of the 4 Cs. I explored the idea of the customer (you and me) and how they relate to the three P’s of Marketing (Product, Placement, Promotion). Also taking into account the past, present, and future to exemplify our research process.

Take a look at the Customer integration of research complied into an animated video.  Here you can see how the customer experience will change in the retail industry.

Stay Aware with Retail!

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4 Responses to The Disruptive Forces that Changed the Customer in Retail

  1. Isabel Goodman December 3, 2015 at 8:58 pm #

    The implementation of technology is our life has done so much more than just helping us stay connected to each other. Technology has brought in a new way of shopping for products we never thought possible. Who would have known retail empires would have to expand their business digitally in order to stay afloat? That customers could purchase anything they want just with the touch of a button? All of this seemed like something that may have occurred in Back to the Future, but certainly not in our time. But here we are. Technology is in every aspect of our lives, especially when it comes to purchases. This video touched upon the value of physical stores in today’s society. While their role is still an important one because consumers can see exactly what they are buying before they buy it and they can hold it in their hands that is becoming less and less important. Online retailers have the option of free shipping and free returns so the consumer does not feel obligated to order a product they KNOW they’ll love; just one they may like and possibly not return. This is diminishing the need for brick and mortar stores every single day. At the end of the video it mentioned that everything may soon be online and I can attest to that. It seems as though there is nothing you cannot get. Even groceries are now available online, such as on Amazon Prime Pantry. This is especially beneficial and appealing to people such as me, a college student, due to the fact that I have no car and making it to the grocery store is nearly impossible unless my commuter friends are around or I am not too lazy to hike up and down South Orange Ave with two arms full of bags. That is not the world we live in anymore. The days of lugging around shopping bags are going to be over due to the implementation of technology. Right now Amazon Prime ships their products in 2 days. No questions asked. If it is Amazon Prime you will get in in two days. That was revolutionary and that is one of their main selling points, but soon that will not be fast enough. We are a generation of now now now. We need everything the minute we want it and because of that, we will change the way shipping is done in order to benefit the customer. Amazon is already doing it, but in order to remain competitive with the retail giant, companies will need to discover new and faster ways of transporting goods in order to win consumers. That is the differentiating factor that is crucial to a company’s success. To position themselves companies must make a product they know they can produce without overpromising, make sure it applies to their target audience, and lastly differentiate themselves from the competition. The main thing in my mind right now is the shipping. Retail stores will soon be a thing of the past so what companies need to do in order to stay relevant is focus their energy on that specific topic. If they do, I believe they will be highly successful and differentiate themselves from their competition, which really is the goal of a corporation. Consumers make the trends and the companies must read them as they are.

  2. Lauren Gutowski December 4, 2015 at 3:30 pm #

    Out of all the business operations technology has come to affect, I’ve never heard anyone point out how the relationship between the customer and the sales associate actually changed in the retail industry. Before the digital boom customers had to rely on the employees to make sure a product could meet their particular needs. Now people are walking in the store already knowing what product they are looking for. The conversations turned from “what is this product?” to “Where can I find this product in your store?” It benefits the employee as well because he has less work to do in a sense. They are not getting hammered with a million questions about the product anymore because everyone has a general knowledge about it already. Hence, the idea that the sales associate is more of a facilitator now; there job itself did not change but just the information they deliver to the customers did. Once again, it all points back to convenience. So let’s say a new iPhone is dropping in a month and we already know our entire species is fangirling over it already. Is everyone going to flock to the Apple store to receive all its new features and accessories? No, they are going to find free time at home and do some thorough research about the new phone. Everything a sales associate could inform you is already on the World Wide Web from sources such as online advertisements, customer reviews, TV, articles about the product, etc.

    As mentioned in the post most companies reach their target audience through a digital platform. Yes, you can casually stroll by and see poster advertisements on a store but to be honest they almost come off as just decorations now. Print media cannot compete when it comes to digital advertising based off how many viewers an advertisement can reach through technology. Not only that but technology has made it easier to control and market to specific demographics. Print advertising could not be seen unless you were physically walking past it. Sure, placing a print advertisement in a certain location did help but not as much as it does today. There’s a reason Hot Wheelz and Bratz dolls commercials are shown on Cartoon Network but not on MTV, or a commercial for alieving symptoms of arthritis is shown on CNN and not on the Disney Channel. Because technology allows marketing to be more direct. I’m sure eighteen year olds are not looking to buy toy cars or children need to tend their arthritis issues. Back then advertisements were just put up for anyone to see because companies thirty years ago were not equipped with the resources to reach a massive audience. Considering there were only a handful of television channels at that time, the price to advertise was much more expensive. The most efficient way would be to put an advertisement in a newspaper. Since the invention of the internet, getting knowledge out about a product has never been easier. It’s also a cheap strategy to use compared to a television which was the only digital choice for quite some time.

  3. Alex Vovk December 10, 2015 at 12:19 pm #

    Similar to the presentation by Jimmy Farney on the related topic on which I have commented in the previous weeks, Karolina Zujewska’s blog post titled “The Disruptive Forces that Changed the Customer in Retail” discusses the changes in the retail industry brought about by the advances in technology and the evolution of the customer as a result of these same technological advancements. Karolina’s use of VideoScribe software to create an informative, engaging, very well structured and produced animated video wonderfully complemented her narration.

    It is evident from what we learn from various articles, studies, and essays, as well as what we ourselves experience every day, that the culture of retail has changed drastically with the introduction and widespread adoption of modern technologies. Karolina’s presentation discusses the past, present, and a future change in the shopping experience from the customer’s perspective to illustrate the profound effect technology has on the shopper’s behavior and mindset.

    There is a continuing trend observed over the past decade which points to the customers’ increased adoption of internet commerce. Whereas in the past shoppers primarily relied on brick and mortar stores or, to a lesser extent, printed catalogs to make their purchases, these days, internet and mobile shopping is gaining popularity among the consumers. The ease with which information can be obtained from various general search engines like Google, Yahoo, or Bing, as well as the special online tools geared toward finding bargains, created a very well informed and sophisticated customer. In the past, when shoppers visited a physical store, they would ask a sales associate for information regarding the product, its location in the store, and the price. This is no longer the case, since the customer comes to the store prepared, knows exactly what he wants, and where to get the best price. That is if he comes to the store at all. Armed with all the information readily available with just a few keystrokes, more and more frequently consumers choose to make their purchases online, whether on their computers, tablets, or through the mobile apps downloaded on their smart phones. Moreover, they can search for various promotions the stores offer to attract and retain their customers, and apply these online promotions and coupons to further lower the purchase price. Internet shopping has many advantages over the traditional shopping methods where the consumer would have to visit multiple stores to check and compare prices and products before making a purchase. The price comparison to get the best bargains is very easy with the help of various sites or by simply using Google search. In a matter of minutes, a savvy shopper can easily discover the best price. The wealth of information and the convenience of making purchases without leaving the house and battling the crowds at the store are hard to beat.

    The declining sales at the physical stores some of the major retailers have reported following Black Friday provide clear evidence that the habits and expectations of the consumers have changed in a very significant way. Virtually every retail outfit has online presence these days, and Internet shopping or purchases through mobile apps available on most smart phones are increasingly becoming some of the more important components of any company’s revenue streams. Realizing how important online commerce has become, companies dedicate significant resources to technology in the effort to attract new customers and retain old ones.

    This emergence and the evolution of a sophisticated and educated consumer behavior will continue. The companies that are determined to stay profitable and increase their customer base will continue to drive innovation, and not only react to the emerging trends, but actually anticipate them and use them to their advantage.

    http://dtl315.shannonweb.net/the-disruptive-forces-that-changed-the-customer-in-retail/

  4. Ryan Hardrove December 10, 2015 at 8:41 pm #

    The advancement of technology in our lives has done so much more than just help us stay connected with each other. Technology has brought a new way of shopping for products we never thought that was possible. Who would have known that retailers would have expand their business digitally in order to stay afloat? That customers could purchase anything they want just with the touch of a button which in my opinion is really amazing. Technology is in every aspect of our lives, especially when it comes to purchases. This video touched upon the value of physical stores in today’s society. While their role is still an important one because consumers can see exactly what they are buying before they buy they can also hold their hands, which is becoming less and less important in today’s world. Online retailers have the option now of free shipping and free returns so the consumer does not feel obligated to order a product they think they’ll love; just one they may like and possibly not return. This is a problem for brick and mortar stores every single day. At the end of the video it mentioned that everything may soon be online and I actually agree with that. It seems as though there is nothing you cannot get. Even groceries are now available online, such as on Amazon Prime Pantry. I think the days of lugging around shopping bags are going to be over due to the implementation of technology. Right now Amazon Prime ships their products in 2 days which is really impressive. We are a generation of everything needs to be fast and now. We need everything the minute we want it and because of that, we will change the way shipping is done in order to benefit the customer. Amazon is already doing it, but in order to remain competitive with the retail giant, companies will need to discover new and faster ways of transporting goods in order to win customers. That is the difference maker that is crucial to a company’s success. Companies must make a product they know they can produce without promising too much, make sure it applies to their target audience, and lastly differentiate themselves from the competition. If they do, I believe they will be highly successful and differentiate themselves from their competition, which really is the goal of any corporation. Consumers make the trends and the companies must read them as they are, because if they don’t listen to trends they could be out of business.

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