“Mobile is changing everything in retail”, says Andy Murray, head of in-store marketing agency Saatchi X.
Quoted in an interview with the Financial Times he admits he has never seen a time like this in retail. And Murray’s views are echoed by business leaders across the world, all busy preparing their firms to take advantage of the digital revolution.
Research carried out earlier this year by Verdict Research on behalf of internet auction site eBay, said retailers need to make a concerted effort now to grow their online presence or face a grim future. The company forecasted that online spending will increase from the current level of £1 in every £13, to £1 in every £8 by 2020.
According to the Financial Times, American department store JC Penney is one firm at the “leading edge of digital retailing”. The company has over 1,000 stores, but over the past few years has been making a concerted effort to get a head start on its competitors by investing heavily in online initiatives.
JC Penney told the FT its new digital platform isn’t just a new web page, it’s an alignment of the physical and digital shopping experience. The business’ internet sales hit $1.5bn last year and that is expected to rise to $2.5bn by 2015.
There is a growing acceptance in the business world that consumers are looking for a unified shopping experience, and expect to find the same products at the same prices whether they’re at home, at work, in the car or even in bed.