“Retail technology is not magic mirrors”

"Retail technology is not magic mirrors"

Mathias Ulrich has been Managing Director of Liganova in Stuttgart since January.

Mathias Ullrich, managing director of Liganova in Stuttgart since January, is one of the leading agencies for brand communication. The digital expert is looking at the big word for new retail. In data, (no) networking and new sources of revenue.

TextilWirtschaft: Have you dropped data on fashion retail today?

By Matthias: Of course, every day. Today I was in Zalando and Zara apps. I constantly leave information about myself on the net. But it does not bother me much. On the contrary: when exciting products curate for me, I like to leave traces.

How much data does a retailer collect on the shop floor every day?

It will still be very low. Often focuses too much on sales figures. Behavioral data will provide more exciting and in-depth insights: what looked, what changed again?Isn’t that very generalized? Of course there are retailers who use big data in a targeted manner.
Naturally. The first steps have been taken. With the help of customer cards, retailers are already collecting valuable information, being able to cluster, address customers more clearly and adjust their product ranges. But that is not yet the new retail concept.

The term is used in China to mean that the boundaries between stationery and digital business are becoming more and more fused. What is the key?

By using the smartphone as a customer interface for all the activities in the store, the existing digital cookie is merged into the physical cookie. This is the new retail. The key to success is a new understanding of the role of channels. It is a complement to the physical and digital space. This frees up resources and space to think about regions in a completely different way and to constantly focus on user benefits. By merging cookies, store sniffed customers can be encouraged to purchase using retargeting.

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How do terminals in the region match the smartphone trend?

The new SEO is called ASO (App Store Optimization, Editor’s Note). It is clear where the trend is going. Apps allow for closer and more personalized customer promotion. The number of apps explodes, acceptance increases, and faster download speeds help.

Then there is no WiFi in the shop.

It is expected to be the history of 5G. We can download apps in a few seconds. No matter where.

One is technology. What content encourages consumers to download apps?

Payment through the app. Loyalty points, although it is considered a bit exaggerated. The feature will be even more exciting: the app offers offers that are only available when using the app. These may be specific products, but they may be events or collaborations tailored to the needs of the target group. Consumers who use the apps and those who want to know about the products in the store should not only be advised of alternatives in the future, but also find out directly if they are actually guided through the store.

With recommended marketing, actors are on a better path. When does this scare consumers?

With this over-stimulation there is a definite fatigue among consumers to choose the right one. Curing, i.e. choosing the right offers in advance, is a big trend. No consumer has time to search thousands of websites for the right product. Instead of secretly getting the best possible recommendations in the context of using an AI, an algorithm can be sold as a curation service. I’m sure customers will subscribe to this as well.

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In the fashion business, influencers sometimes choose from background noise. How can this benefit retailers?

You should go one, maybe two more steps. You can offer virtual space that customers provide as advertising space in their app. That is what made e-commerce profitable in the first place. Providers advertise where the search begins – i.e. more with retailers. Why did Amazon, Salando & Co become platforms? So they can free themselves from their retail trade and make a profit through retail media. Why not cut a piece of it? Retail technology is not terminals and magic mirrors. It’s about finding new ways to make money through digitization to make the store more profitable. There are great possibilities here that are not used.

Advertisers certainly do not look at the retailer’s margin. Which currency is relevant?

From the manufacturer’s point of view, traditional retail works a little better. You throw your products into the black hole. The retailer claims the relationship with the end user. As a manufacturer, I do not receive any data on customer behavior and sales figures with delay. What if the retailer sees themselves as a manufacturer’s service provider? Brands can rent flexibility, pay a commission for it, collect data and learn to better understand their customers.

If we’re talking about new ways of making money, we can get into gaming.

Many have a tendency to play more clearly than expected. Let’s take a look at the eSports platform Zwift. Every day 50,000 cyclists compete with each other. Equipment becomes a competitive achievement and optimizes your avatar with the best bikes, jerseys and helmets. This often affects the actual purchase behavior. Great advertising space for brands.

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This idea is more than 20 years old. Why does second life not work?

It was too early. The idea is basically correct. Especially targeted at the next generation.

TOP-THEMA Retail Technology, E-Commerce

Stores are growing into spaces. When e-commerce is happening everywhere consumers. Physical space will attract target groups and turn digital space into more sales. Retail Technology Meets E-Commerce – You can read great stories and background information online at Texl‌wertChat.de / retail-technology-e-commerce.

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