Running a coffee shop or a food stand that attracts customers during morning rush hour or during busy shopping times used to be about securing volumes and shop location. Marketing started as a way of creating brand awareness and used to happen when customers saw your shop and then decided to come in and make a purchase. That world is quickly changing however in the era of networked shopping.
Shop owners today can extend their marketing zone from that first visual content to now, when potential new customers show up in proximity of their store. Shops can extend promotions to frequent customers as soon as their location matches a given store. If you are in an unfamiliar area, you can even get navigational assistance to your favorite shop nearby. By extending marketing from the time you see a shop to now where that shop can “see” you nearby, increasing the effectiveness of marketing significantly.
This is especially relevant for city shoppers – aka ‘cityzens’ – who can benefit from receiving superior offerings, relevant to them here and now, from the shops they prefer. Smartphones become the bridge between online marketing and in-store purchases. Daily specials can be considered before determining which shops to visit. This new marketing model is suitable for both food and merchandise shops.
In addition to changing the marketing process, the payment process is being impacted by new innovations. Paying directly with your phone is being introduced on a broad scale. Credit card validation is central today in determining what IS/IT capabilities to deploy. The change in the payment capabilities is a key part of the transition to networked stores. Perhaps the most interesting aspect of this trend is the broad applicability. It is not about luxury goods stores, this is relevant for any shop in the Networked Society.
My predictions for the future of networked shopping are:
– Stores will leverage location technology for marketing to attract ‘cityzens’ nearby before they even see the shop.
– Smartphones will be the device involved in the target marketing process.
– In addition to marketing changes, shops will complement their payment infrastructure to support payments through phones directly.
– The IS/IT capabilities will change to support the new era of “in-line shopping”.
To learn more about In-line shopping, have a look at this report from ConsumerLab