Retail Insights from Retail & Tech No 16

Retail news and trends to watch out for

  • Lancôme Travel Retail’s digital effects. Lancôme Travel Retail Asia Pacific has put the focus on digital at its new store in Lotte Duty Free’s Main Store in Seoul, South Korea. The aim, it says, is to offer consumers a personalized, tech-driven retailtainment shopping experience. The store is the first time that Lancôme has introduced L’Oréal’s AR make-up try-on service Modiface in travel retail. Shoppers can shade match foundations and try on other make-up products via the virtual mirror, either from an iPad or by scanning the QR codes next to each make-up icon through the Lotte Duty Free app. There is a Génifique Game Table that introduces customers to the Advanced Génifique serum, while at a large-sized LED bottle of the product, shoppers can avail of name engraving services and social sharing technology. The store also features a contactless experience with digital payment methods, electronic price tags, personalized QR codes and personal mobile shopping carts.
  • Giving back control. Online retailers are beginning to give brands what they want. German e-commerce company Zalando just launched a new feature to give brands direct control over their content management and presentation online. Called Brand Homes, the feature allows partner brands to curate and manage how they want to present their collections and products on the Zalando platform. Just a few weeks ago, Amazon also sought to give brands more say over how their products are presented on its new Luxury Stores platform – brands independently make decisions regarding their inventory, selection and pricing. Increasingly the Tmall ‘store-in-store’ model for online retail is taking hold.
  • Teaming up for social commerce. German beauty retailer Douglas has partnered with TV commerce shopping network HSE24 to sell its products. Douglas will launch a Beauty Talk show on HSE24’s TV and digital channels featuring products that can be purchased. The deal enables Douglas to reach 45 million households in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, and gives it a stronger position in the fast-growing area of social shopping.
  • The Amazon effect. Amazon is the number-one choice for shopping this holiday season, according to delivery experience management company Convey. Some 61% of those surveyed said they planned to shop at Amazon, while a distant second choice is big-box retailers like Walmart and Target, where 16% said they plan to buy gifts. However, despite this, negative sentiment about Amazon is growing; some 31% stated that Amazon has a negative impact on retail, which is up from 24% who said the same thing in January. Nonetheless, among shoppers who have a negative opinion of Amazon, nearly half (46%) admit they will shop there anyway during the holiday. The survey also revealed that consumers will begin shopping earlier this holiday season (82% of those surveyed said they would shop earlier) and 30% stated that they will shop online. Aware that retailers are under pressure, 89% of consumers said they are willing to give stores extra time to deliver packages this holiday season. However, shoppers are also looking for more free shipping, timing transparency and flexible fulfillment. According to shoppers, the top-three most important delivery services are: Free two-day shipping (44%); free shipping on returns (18%); and being able to track packages en route (14%). Some 68% say they won’t shop with a brand again after a poor delivery experience.