Did you know that 56% of retail jobs are expected to have a digital component by 2019? While merchants are currently operating in challenging environments, digital has fundamentally changed the industry and opened up new and exciting opportunities.

Consumers themselves are becoming more digitally savvy, and e-commerce businesses have disrupted the traditional retail game. This has resulted in the adoption of new and innovative digital strategies and creative marketing ideas for retail, to win consumers over in an increasingly competitive landscape.

Online spending via desktops and mobile devices is growing faster than traditional retail shopping for Australian consumers. With this knowledge, retailers have had to reassess their traditional methods of trade and stay up to date with evolving digital technologies and consumer behaviours. In order to do so, retailers have had to adapt to the idea of gathering and analysing information about their customers in order to make rational decisions and create personalised experiences that their consumers demand.

With online shopping becoming more common and mobile devices accounting for almost 50% of website traffic, e-commerce has become an essential component for retailers. In fact, 6/10 retailers believe that those who do not invest in the online retail industry will face further complications as the industry evolves. A staggering 20.1 million Australians are online every month through both desktop and mobile devices, highlighting the importance and an ever-growing demand for mobile integration.

The widespread adoption of smartphone devices and the popularity of social media has also had a great effect on the Australian retail industry. Consumer insights demonstrate that customers are heavily influenced by social media and that their purchase behaviour is a direct correlation of influencer marketing and social media content creators. In addition to this, many retail brands are updating their online retail strategy to implement innovative digital media marketing techniques and creative e-commerce solutions. Such digital creative innovations include chat bots and digital games which improve consumer engagement and create exhilarating brand experiences.

For example, the popular Australian small appliance manufacturer Kambrook perfected this with their forward-thinking Easter Egg Hunt Campaign, implemented by yours truly. Our custom creative solutions allowed the company to unify the excitement of Easter and the joy of using their products to create a unique brand experience. Our digital marketing agency developed a strategy which allowed consumers to engage with the brand through an online Easter Egg Hunt that guided the customers through various pages on their website, ultimately raising awareness. This online experience made possible through the advancements in digital marketing and developments in technology exceeded these expectations, and our digital ad agency was able to reach 180,000 consumers in 3 short weeks – a challenging feat prior to digital innovation. This example highlights how the application of various e-commerce technologies inevitably provides profitable opportunities for merchants and allows for consumer demands to be satisfied.

In conjunction with an online retail marketing strategy, businesses are noticing immense value by incorporating digital technology into their bricks-and-mortar locations. Mobile wallets which store loyalty cards and allow for payments directly from the consumer’s smartphone device have become more common within physical stores. Such in-store marketing efforts allow for a greater level of personalisation and convenience for the consumer. Some stores are even investing in technology such as apps, virtual fitting rooms and showrooms, in-store consumer path tracking and beacons which further demonstrates that convenience and tailored offers are paramount for today’s incredibly savvy consumer.

Evidently, both offline and online technologies have become increasingly important, particularly as consumers have full control of the interactions that they have with brands. 86% of vendors stronger believe that platforms are the “glue” of the digital economy and are looking for ways to merge offline and online consumer experiences. A multi-platform approach is imperative as the retail landscape continues to change, and consumer engagement becomes a more crucial focus.

Successful bricks-and-mortar retailers are noticing larger profits and growing sales due to their adoption of technology to enhance the customer experience. Vendors have begun to implement and take advantage of various technologies and apps such as QR Codes with logos and beacons that create that create a holistic and integrated brand experience with the customer at the forefront. As the digital industry advances, and consumers become increasingly dependant on new technologies, companies need to embrace these innovations in order to continually drive growth and strengthen their brand strategy in an already challenging ecosystem.

To see how the talented and forward-thinking team at RGC could integrate digital technology solutions that connect consumers to your brand, contact Richard on (02) 8883 2988 or email richard@rgcadvertising.com.au