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Category: Industry News Tags: Omni-channel, Retail Commercial Real Estate Sector

There’s a trend that is changing the retail customer’s shopping experience and, in turn, the way successful retailers conduct business to meet modern-day customer conveniences, needs, and wants. E-commerce has not replaced the brick and mortar retail industry, however, this trend indicates that it is changing the shopping and selling experience. We interviewed Kyle B. Matthews, Chairman and CEO of Matthews Retail Advisors, to ask him three questions about the changing retail landscape and, more specifically, the effect that omni-channel retail is having on the market.
Interviewer: What exactly is omni-channel retail?
Kyle Matthews: For those who are new to this concept, omni-channel retail is a multichannel approach to sales whereby retailers provide customers with a seamless shopping experience. In a nutshell, omni-channel retail allows the customers to approach their shopping experience from multiple angles, via computer, mobile device, telephone, and in-store, to name a few.
Interviewer: How is omni-channel retail changing the retail shopping experience?
Kyle Matthews: Modern-day retail shoppers want to be able to identify what they want via the web, often before they go into a store. MIT came out with a report in 2014 called “Beyond the Checkout Cart.” It examined what was shaping brick and mortar stores and Internet sales. Basically, the study found that today’s consumers expect everything to be available at their fingertips and the reports that 80% of consumers check prices online while accessing a mobile device in-store. In other words, shoppers are going online before and during their in-store visit to identify what they want and where they can get the best price.
Interviewer: How can retailers adapt to increase sales amidst this trend?
Kyle Matthews: There are a couple of things retailers can do to increase sales; most importantly, retailers need to have a digital presence that allows them to prequalify the purchase. Prequalifying the purchase increases the probability of the sale in a brick and mortar store. A great tool to stimulate sales is couponing, more specifically in-store coupons that are only available on the store’s website or on a smartphone app. Along that same line of thought is price-matching. Customers have neither the time nor the patience to visit three or four different stores to find the best price and price-matching allows customers to expedite the process while going to the store that’s most convenient for them. Knowing they are getting the best deal on that particular item creates a comfort level and makes the decision to purchase that much more effortless. As always, great customer service and an effortless customer experience are always great ways to attract and keep loyal customers.
For more information or to speak with one of our retail vertical advisors email [email protected].
See the full bio of Kyle B. Matthews, CCIM.

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