Are online retailers really planning on moving to the high street? Studies are showing that high street stores are out of pocket due to the convenience of shopping online, offering consumer’s opportunities to search for bargains. Well, let’s face it, who doesn’t love a bargain?? Still, it seems that they now want an even bigger piece of the retail pie, with three of the largest online retailers reportedly looking for space in the ‘high street.’ In 2011, in Soho, London, eBay opened a pop-up store. In 2012 Amazon had also been looking for retail space in Seattle, USA. And lastly, Google have reportedly been quietly looking for appropriate outlets and have put up a few pop up stores in the meantime.
So, what will this mean for us shoppers? I know I personally love shopping online but isn’t it annoying when what you’ve ordered isn’t quite what you thought it would be? Too big, too small, wrong colour, wrong style… And when you’re in a rush and need something last minute, it’s the high street you hit to fix the problem! Maybe these online retailers have been missing a trick…
The word that seems to be circulating a lot lately is ‘Omnichannel.’ This means consumers should be able to access retailers where ever and however they like. Surely this is everyone’s dream?? Go in store, have a cheeky look around, try on all the pretty shoes, dresses, tops umm’ing and arrr’ing as to whether you should buy it, can afford it, can justify it. Yet, if you could have the reassurance that this item will be available to you online, at a time that was more convenient, and you know it looks good on you, wouldn’t that be ideal? Especially on pay day!
Although, that said and done, the online stores can easily change their products on a day to day basis, and give us consumers a thousand options of goodies to buy. But can they keep this up in a high street store??
From GDP’s point of view, if these giant online retailers hit the high street this could potentially mean BIG business, which we would love to get amongst. High street retailers are already moving towards in-store theatre so could you imagine what online retailers such as Google and Amazon will bring to the table. In-store theatre is about creating a lifestyle. Everything you need under one roof. They have nail bars, beauty booths, cafés, sushi bars, wine bars; the list goes on and on. Retailers have been very smart with these ideas by using the shop-in-shop concept. Every turn you make into a different section makes you feel as though you have just walked into a new store altogether!
So – back to my point earlier about imagining what the online retailers could bring to the table, ideas have already been put out there about creating a virtual 3D store. To the human eye the store looks empty, but as soon as you put the 3D goggles on the store comes alive! You can see everything so clearly and feel like you are touching it. And just imagine if they brought in a body scanner?! A scanner to scan your body in store and then you can choose any item of clothing to try on and see what it will look like on without having to actually try it on! No more tripping over your clothes getting changed, leaving the changing room with your hair looking like a birds nest, getting all hot and bothered trying a million different things on and becoming stressed. The only hard work you will need to do is choose what item you would like to use on the scanner!
GDP have worked with Karstadt previously and created the cube concept, shop-in-shop, so we are confident, as a company, that with our experience in this design already, when these in- store theatres seriously take off we will be there all the way to help retailers create this idyllic shopping environment.