Is the death of traditional retail truly upon us?

Author: Gary Byrne, Head of Retail Solutions UK

 

We know that the retail landscape is changing rapidly, but is speculation around the death of traditional bricks and mortar retail stores overblown?

Recent research has staggeringly found that one third of consumers would rather spend time on the monotonous task of cleaning dishes than visiting a retail store. What was once deemed a pleasurable pastime, has now turned into a chore. This isn’t surprising given consumers have more choice than ever following businesses’ continued investment into e-commerce, which has in turn intensified customer expectations.

Online shopping offers buyers an enriched, seamless and tailored user experience. This experience is unsurprisingly then expected to be matched in physical stores. There’s therefore a tendency to declare that physical retail sales are on the wane, and that e-commerce as a growing sales channel is replacing this spend. Retail isn’t, however, always this black and white. While there have been fatalities in 2018, most notably Toys ‘R’ Us, retailers such as Aldi and Costco have continued to successfully expand their physical footprint having struck a winning formula.  

At Panasonic Business, we believe that the secret to retail longevity lies in greater digitisation, automation and connectivity across the entire retail experience and supply chain. With this, physical retail spaces can be enhanced and play an ever-greater role in customer experience.

Our newly opened Retail Strategic Business Unit is the vehicle to help physical retail live on and thrive in the world of omni-channel commerce. Built upon three principles; boosting sales, optimising store operations and security and loss prevention, we are developing digital solutions for retail stores via our customer-centric business model and leaning on our strength in IoT solutions.

With state-of-the-art innovative technology such as 360-degree shopper analysis, Out-of-Stock Management and Space Player, Panasonic Business will be driving towards becoming not only Europe’s leading digital retail solutions provider, but also working closely with expert partners to deliver efficient in-store operations.

It’s apparent that industry professionals appreciate the critical need for technology in order to enable physical stores to embrace the digital change, as nearly 80% have stated their C-level executives “classify in-store digitalisation as a top management priority.” And given it’s been estimated that by 2021, total EU retail sales will reach €758 billion – it’s imperative for the future of any retail business that digitalisation is top of their agenda.

To find out more about how Panasonic Business can help your retail business combat failing customer satisfaction level, and develop a harmonious digital strategy, see more details here: https://business.panasonic.co.uk/solutions/retail

 

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