Blog: IGD offers look at "stores of the future"

Michelle Russell | 24 February 2012

Wearing a hat for both just-food and our sister site just-drinks, I headed to Coca-Cola Enterprises' 'Store of the Future' report launch in London this week.

While the Coke bottler covered plans to launch more innovative packaging and labelling in the UK over the next five to ten years, its report, produced by the IGD, also raised a number of interesting concepts for the future of retailing.

Using diagrams to illustrate better how these "stores of the future" will look, Anne Bordier, director of customised research for IGD, told attendees how consumers are becoming for technology-savvy. As a result, she believes retailers will need to take this on board and personalise the shopping experience for consumers in order to adapt to this rapid growth of online and social media.

"Shoppers will demand more personalisation. They'll expect communication, promotions and deals to be tailored to their individual values and needs," Bordier said. "Social media and online forums will grow in importance as shoppers seek advice and reviews before purchasing more than ever, and technology such as smartphones and 'intelligent trolleys' will enable stores to satisfy the desire for personalisation as people walk around the store."

Bordier suggested that hollograms may even direct consumers around stores, and more bulky items will be removed from shop floors and limited to online purchasing.

While many of the concepts spoken about are already, to some degree, in place, including 'click and collect' and mobile phone shopping, Bordier believes this is only going to evolve.

If indeed this is the case, then retailers and suppliers will need to be thinking ahead, particularly given the incredibly dynamic retail environments we have already become accustomed to.

As customers become more media savvy, stores will also need to adapt to the world around them and challenges themselves to become more nimble and innovative.


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