Top Trends in Retail Innovation
So far, 2014 is a year of record cold and snow, but the temperature’s warmer than ever when it comes to online commerce, especially in terms of security.
U.S. mobile commerce sales rose 63 percent in 2013, with domestic online sales expected to reach $370 billion by 2017, according to Forrester. Of course, that bodes well for FreedomPay, as our products help clients make payments safer, faster, smoother, simpler and smarter than ever before.
What trends can we expect to see in retail innovation in 2014? Let’s take a look:
• Hey buddy, can you spare a connection? Free Wi-Fi used to be a nice perk offered by forward-thinking retailers. Now, it’s a must for tracking behavioral data and uncovering marketing opportunities. When customers come in with smart phones and apps, Wi-Fi allows retailers to personalize marketing and encourage loyalty card and digital wallet use – not to mention allow easy access to the company website and apps.
• In with the new. CIOs expect to implement many cutting-edge technologies, with context-aware tech (32 percent), mobile payments (28 percent), digital signage (24 percent) and mobile POS (22 percent) ranking prominently, according to a recent study by Tata Consultancy Services.
• Reach out and touch someone anywhere. New technology can help reach customers anywhere, no matter if they are online or in-store. Smart phones and apps, in-store kiosks and interactive displays in-store can bring new ways to interact with customers whether they’re in-store or not. Some stores are using location apps — some driven by loyalty programs — to draw customers into local stores.
• The world is your oyster. Any 2014 retail plan must be multi-channel, and that means international expansion (probably online) is a must. Using global supply chains will help serve local markets, while international connectivity to stores and partners – not to mention consumers – will drive growth.
• Confidence is sexy. Swipe on mobile POS devices will meet or exceed security expectations over the next three years, according to 96 percent of the respondents in the 2014 Infinite Peripherals™ Payment Technology Trends Survey. Just 23 percent worry that swipe at register payments won’t be able to keep up with evolving fraud and theft threats.
• Tomorrow the world. In the same survey, 30 percent of respondents expect within three years that swipe-on mobile POS devices will dominate the payment technology market.
• Upgrades to make the grade. At a session during the National Retail Federation’s just-concluded 2014 show, data was presented showing that 30 percent of retailers expect to upgrade or replace their POS system during 2014 – and 60 percent want a unified transaction engine.
What do all these trends have in common?
For starters, all are directly in FreedomPay’s wheelhouse, and we look forward to not only being an integral part of the conversation in 2014, but also one of the engines making the online world work safely and effectively.
Stay warm: We’re going to turn up the heat.