Insights

Experiential Retailing - Mobility

Practice Head, SMAC - IN
Valtech India

June 23, 2015

The last seven years were reinvented and revolutionized by the proliferation of devices.

Devices found their space in peoples’ lives organically; without much resistance. They came in multiple shapes and sizes like a mobile phone, smartphone, tabs, fabs, watches, glasses, headgears etc. With the rapid adoption of these devices and their integral binding to an individual’s life, it slowly took over its only rival – TV. Devices, by far, have been the most personal adoption of technology that humans have ever done.

Through the years, what could be achieved through a device – especially a smartphone has been the most talked about topic amongst experts and innovators. The fresh innovations created completely new areas of entertainment, experience and business. This space has grown exponentially in the last 5 years. Today, it is virtually impossible to imagine our life without a mobile phone.

While the possibilities are endless as to what could be achieved through devices; there is a fresh debate brewing amongst the innovators as to what should be the next avenue of delivering experiences to users using these devices. While there have been a lot of fresh ideas in this space, Valtech has been toying with the ability to merge the real world with the user’s virtual space. This has led us to experiment with Augmented Reality in a big way and identify scenarios where AR could deliver the next level of user experience in the Digital world of future.

We work on concepts where a user can experience a product virtually using all the human senses and customize that experience on the go. These capabilities allow the user or buyer to become acquainted with the product first hand from the comfort of their homes and customize it to their liking before making a buying decision. This helps the buyer to shorten their purchase cycle and make an informed decision faster. The unique ability to experience ‘virtual merchandise’ and the ability to customize, will be extremely helpful for users when they are trying to buy a product which offers broad variety and features. This is especially helpful for such products which are high-value purchases like a car, house or something that has high emotional value to it like a wedding dress or jewelry. To be able to experience a product from the comforts of your home is unbeatable!

For the Retailers too, this is great news! By using an experiential channel to sell your products, the retailers will now have more control on how their products or brands can influence a buyer. By reducing the buyer’s decision cycle a brand is going to sell faster, sell more and sell better to its prospective customers. In addition to that, it would help a brand reduce its capital and operational expenses by being able to keep limited products in the physical store. Over a period of time, the retailer would want to have more ‘virtual stores’ (which are physical stores capable of provide a virtual experience of the merchandise) thus reducing costs and gaining more market penetration using digital channels.

Augmented Realty is a brave new world of ‘Experiential Retailing’ and we at Valtech believe that this is going to change the face of Retailing forever. ‘Experiential Retailing’ will outpace e-commerce and m-commerce by engaging buyers at a human level and delivering experiences with a personal touch!

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