HomeFemale Reindeer

The digital-physical retail partnership – Retailing Africa

The digital-physical retail partnership – Retailing Africa
Like Tweet Pin it Share Share Email

by Jonathan Hurvitz. We have observed the increase of e-commerce, the realignment of bodily suppliers and the ‘sweet spot’ in-concerning: human link and ordeals.

The increase of e-commerce, whilst accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, has been in organic and natural momentum for the earlier ten years, fuelled by a market that is embracing widespread digitisation and the advantage of on the internet retail. Some have termed this shift the “retail apocalypse” – in which the electronic marketplace overtakes bodily retail retailers, looking at the latter steadily bow out of relevance. But a distinct faculty of considered is that where by a model has a presence in each worlds, it is not a circumstance of one changing the other but somewhat a realignment of physical stores’ priorities and customer methods to work, in collaboration with their e-commerce counterparts.

Though e-commerce has been flourishing in a current market that is demanding more quickly gratification, increased amounts of benefit, and a wider assortment of options and possibilities, actual physical retail stores even now have numerous strengths. The human connection is one of them, in which a shopper is able to get the suggestions and thoughts of a trustworthy shop assistant, for instance, when trying on an outfit. There is also the “touch and feel” factor of a solution, such as a down cover or a silk costume, which consumers do not have when shopping online.

These are two of the 4 regions in which bodily stores are equipped to reshape them selves to stay relevant. The other two are ultra-usefulness, and immersive exploration. Ultra-comfort is being capable to stop at the corner shop on your way house for a bottle of wine to have with dinner, or swiftly acquiring a bunch of bouquets enroute to going to a buddy. This, in essence, minimises the time amongst seeking/needing anything, and receiving it.

Immersive working experience is when a retail retail store generates an in-shop knowledge that pretty much tends to make the store a spot, and shoppers purposefully select to go there to immerse on their own in the sights, smells, truly feel and from time to time flavor, in the circumstance of a chocolate shop, of a retail area. e-Commerce brands just cannot generate these in-person experiences.

Developing experiential engineering

With that said, audio visible engineering is evolving to build a edition of these ordeals for buyers. Augmented and digital fact (AR and VR) are applications that e-commerce models will be capable to use to deliver some of the in-individual ordeals out of the bodily shop and into a customer’s home. Becoming ready to see what an outfit will glimpse like on you via VR know-how eliminates the have to have to stop by a keep to consider it on. And making use of AR to see what a lounge suite will search like in your residing room, or a 70-inch Television mounted on the wall in your amusement area, can reduce down on the hours of shopping. This advantage, time- and perhaps money-preserving abilities are major drawcards for customers.

Membership gets a hybrid bridge

A further selection is paying for a membership to a item, and then owning the overall flexibility of becoming able to test its search, come to feel, and in good shape in your dwelling – in the situation of furniture or appliances or a assortment of outfits in the situation of a wardrobe demo – then exchanging it or returning it if it doesn’t match your anticipations. This is the design that Teljoy follows, which is a fantastic illustration of providing a hybrid ‘bridge’ involving the virtual and serious world. AR/VR are not still produced to the stage of being ready to swap quite a few physical activities, and the ‘touch, experience and try’ element that is so critical to human beings.

For now, electronic and bodily retail ordeals and client journeys even now have their person strengths, and in the present marketplace a model would be well-put to capitalise on the strengths of both of those in buy to continue to be relevant and serve the needs of a divided, or in fact inclusive-of-both equally, assortment of buyer preferences.

Omni-channel optimisation has turn out to be extra critical than at any time, and a consistent visible and manufacturer concept wants to traverse both electronic and bodily retail spaces. Models also will need to go deeper into comprehension their consumers and their needs and preferences. This permits them to greatly enhance the electronic encounter for shoppers who prioritise navigation, broader selection and possibilities, and effortless, secure payment capacity and increase the in-man or woman knowledge for customers who prioritise own trustworthy guidance, extremely-advantage, the contact-and-sense of a merchandise, and an immersive knowledge.


Main image credit score: Pixabay.com.



Jonathan Hurvitz is the Team CEO of on the internet retailer Teljoy and a registered Chartered Accountant in South Africa.




– Receive the Retailing Africa publication each and every Wednesday • Subscribe here.