9 Retail Innovation Stories

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by Lisa Cramer

We understand—there’s a lot to keep up with in retail today! So, here’s your quick fix of January’s most innovative retail stories, trends and need-to-know insights. Enjoy!

Retail Innovation Stories
January’s Top 9

  1. Walmart Taps Real-Time Data to Solve its Problems (Forbes)
  2. Starbucks Takes Orders Via Voice Assistant, Alexa (International Business Times)
  3. Kroger Uses Analytics Tech to Create Interactive Grocery Shelves (WSJ)
  4. Neiman Marcus Tests Voice-Controlled Wearables for Employees (Apparel)
  5. Mumbai Slum Uses Beacons to Advertise Local Retail Market (Springwise)
  6. Cover Girl Ushers in “Conversational Commerce” with Influencer Chatbots (The Drum)
  7. Sears Unveils AI-Driven Tire Shopping App (Retail Dive)
  8. IKEA Lets Shoppers Hack its Furniture with “Open Source” Sofa (Consumerist)
  9. Nordstrom Tests Pop-Ups Featuring Korean Brands & VR (Glossy)

Retail Trends & Insights
January’s Top 4

  1. More Retailers “Not Technology Slackers Any Longer

    • Under serious competitive pressures, more retailers are turning to tech to turn the tides.
    • As noted above, a growing list of retailers, like Walmart and Kroger are starting to ultilize data intelligence to fix their stores, more and more in real-time.
    • And, some like Kohl’s and Target, have been working hard behind-the-scenes to clean up their act for a little while now, said the CIO and Chief Digital Officer, Mike McNamara recently at NRF: “We’re not technology slackers any longer”.
    • So where do you start first? Check out these top 3 trends disrupting retail and what they mean for you.
  2. $44B in Buying Power Want Personalization Across Channels

    • A new study by IBM found that the Gen Z demographic represents $44 billion in estimated buying power.
    • So, what do they want? According to the study, Gen Z expects and wants personalized interaction, considers quality more important than price and wants to be engaged with a brand across all its channels.
    • Yet, on the retail front, just 19% of retailers provide a highly personalized digital experience and 84% do not offer any in-store mobile services.
  3. Amazon is Now Worth More than America’s 8 Largest Retailers Combined

    • While others shrink under the pressure, Amazon grows bigger, with its market cap now bigger than 8 of the largest retailers.
    • For the record, that roster includes Best Buy, Macy’s, Target, JCPenney, Nordstrom, Walmart, Kohl’s and Sears.
  4. Consumers Want to be Wanted

    • According to a new study, 79% of consumers will only buy from brands that provide they care about earning a shopper’s business.
    • Also, 89% of American consumers say they are loyal to brands that share their values.
    • And, 74% of consumers believe brands can set a new standard by how they serve customers.

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