With innovative technologies continuing to transform the entire customer buying journey, the in-store shopping experience this Christmas is likely to be entirely different to that in 10 years’ time. From the moment customers enter the store and select gifts for loved ones, through to the checkout process and getting goods home - there’s no touch point that will be left unchanged or even find itself redundant in years to come.
The Christmas customer experience of 2027 will start before a customer even steps foot in a store. Retailers will be able to provide shoppers with data-driven benefits and send personalised offers to customers directly, based on historic transactional data, to entice both existing and new customers instore.
Once a customer steps in store, Christmas shopping will become a more enjoyable experience. Goodbye to cumbersome baskets and trolleys, and maybe even handbags, as physical wallets make way for mobile payments and a plastic-free society. Gone will be the days of cluttered shop floors, as shops move to a showroom layout and remove clothing rails and shelves stacked with goods. Individual ‘show products’ will be on display and customers able to try on garments via virtual reality mirrors, scheduling delivery straight to their front door. While some may be saddened by this prospect, this could turn to joy when they don’t have to queue to pay for their goods. Invisible payments via smart phones will happen behind the scenes, taking away payment pains.
The prospect of a digitally-led shopping experience for Christmas 2027 is certainly an exciting one and could help turn around the fortunes of a rapidly declining high-street. What we know for certain is that as a cashless and even plastic-less society becomes more of a reality, innovative payment methods will enable a more convenient and experience-driven customer journey, requiring little to no effort from consumers at all. A truly exciting Christmas present that we can all look forward to.
by Ralf Ohlhausen, Director, PPRO Group