It’s always a pleasure to have Andrew Busby join the show and about talk technology and consumer trust. He is an amazing wealth of information and always has some well thought out ideas and concepts. Today we will talk to him about retail trends as they relate to today’s consumer and those of the past. What all this means for retail and digital commerce today, and how Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning and other technologies will play a part in shaping the overall retail landscape of the future.
Today’s Retail Consumer.
Andrew believes that today’s consumers are not loyal, in the same sense as they once used to be. I would argue that neither are the many brands in which we as consumers are purchasing from. I spoke to Eric Almquist from Bain and Company on a recent show How to Disrupt Retail With Value about retail becoming a commodity.
When we talk to Andrew it appears that the need for TRUST is very important in the creation of a strong retail or eCommerce brand. He believes that this comes from getting to know your customers more on a 1 to 1 level. Something that works for smaller stores where you are able to operate you entire business on the premise of attention to the customer, but how can this be applied at scale?
Building Trust through Information Gathering
In order to understand the concepts which Andrew and I discuss in terms of technology, specifically AI (Artificial Intelligence) and Machine Learning you need to understand the core of what makes the smaller 500 square foot store work. A store that carries far less inventory, and charge more for the same products but continue to grow a loyal base of consumers and earn each and every one of their trust. Its in the knowledge. Truly knowing the product and the customer, asking questions to understand their intents and needs, is exactly what is winning for these small stores.
So how can you scale this for the future and for larger box stores? Arm your sales associates with the data and knowledge they need both about the products and the consumer. How, using advanced technologies like AI and Machine Learning.
How we can use AI & Machine Learning to know the customer on a 1 on 1
The data available, coupled with advancements in technology will lead us to a place where retail will be dominated by digital. You will see physical brick and mortar taking full advantage of technology to enable sales associates. You will see eCommerce doubling down on these advancements, to be a knowledgeable resource but also by building trust with consumers by truly assisting them in the buying process. It will arm sales associates and digital interfaces with product and personal knowledge not to facilitate a sale, but more so to help match the consumer with right product fit.
When the focus moves back to the consumer and less on the sale, you will see trust and loyalty return.
Tune in Now!
P.S. If you liked this discussion, you should look to these shows from the Archives:
Generational Loyalty in eCommerce
How AI will Cure Cancer – Previous show with Andrew