Brick and mortar is still in the running

There was a time when people thought that brick-and-mortar retail would shrink or perhaps even vanish. But, digital technology is transforming traditional retail, instead. Smartphones are actually driving in store traffic. The smartphone has become a retail assistant, guiding purchases and answering questions like an electronic sales associate.
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People are changing their shopping habits and intelligent retailers are taking advantage of this by helping customers connect online shopping to offline purchases.

Literal foot traffic is no longer as important as it once was. Customers are now shopping online and buying offline. They are no longer driving from store to store to find what they want. Instead, they are shopping online first and then physically visiting the retailer to make the purchase. This means that sales are often closed before customers enter the store. They aren't shopping around, they already know what they want. And so, sales increase while foot traffic is reduced which raises the value of each customer visit.

This new behavior means that retailers must make a seamless connection between online and offline. Products listed on websites must be available at the physical location and competitive pricing becomes more important as customers can now cross check prices across a number of retailers in only a few minutes. Detailed product information must also be available because customers continue to research online even while they are visiting the store.

All this means that online and offline can no longer be treated as separate silos. Instead, retailers must build a holistic approach where digital and brick-and-mortar assist and reinforce each other.  

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