A new in-store shopping experience, called, "Social Retailing," is designed to target young consumers. It mates social computing with shopping, and was unveiled by IconNicholson in a concept demonstration, X07, during the National Retail Federation's convention and show in New York in January.
Social Retailing brings today's digital lifestyle into the retail store with community building tools and user generated content capabilities that help tech savvy, young adults, who are typically compulsive and social shoppers, connect in real time with their friends to share their shopping experiences. One of the key technologies, dubbed, "near field communication," also serves to help retailers monitor inventory in real time and collect data that provides valuable insight into customer mindsets, behaviors and evolving needs.
"Social retailing is a concept that evolved out of our work building personas based on youth shopping needs, behaviors and current technology trends," says Rachael McBrearty, the company's vice president of creative strategy. "The demonstrations in X07 provide retailers with a vision for how they can reach the audience at the center of the social computing craze seen in websites like YouTube and MySpace, to connect in-store shopping with the online world in a way that is new, entertaining and completely relevant."
The X07, "Store of the Future," is a state of the art, pop up boutique that features interactive kiosks and displays. It provides a look at the latest ideas and retail techniques for captivating the ever elusive young adult shopper.
The pop up shop within X07 used clothing to demonstrate how young shoppers can move from online to mobile, interacting through text messaging, instant messaging and email for a contemporary shopping experience.
IconNicholson also partnered with MasterCard SecureCode in the X07 lab unit to demonstrate how the online checkout process can be securely protected against unauthorized card usage. "The technologies behind social retailing tap two major industry trends that will drive change for the next several years," says Christopher Enright, the developer's chief technology officer. They are, "Near-field communication and Web 2.0, which together show how much impact the emerging Internet of objects will have on everyday life."
With Social Retailing, retailers can successfully attract more shoppers, deliver promotions more effectively and benefit from positive word of mouth referrals, Enright contends. Tom Nicholson, founder and chief executive officer, says all of the demonstrations shown in the X07 demonstration are possible with today's technology.
Retailers can visit IconNicholson's 3,000 square foot, "Retail Center of Excellence," in its New York City office. Live demonstrations span from supply chain to store, with a focus on how technology can impact the customer experience. For more information, visit http://www.iconnicholson.com.
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