The Lead Innovation Summit: Discussions In Review

July 15, 2022

Yasemin Demetriou

This July 2022, we had the pleasure of attending The Lead Innovation Summit 2022 in Brooklyn, New York. The two-day show connected hundreds of retailers and vendors to educate and learn from one another on the future of retail. Below, we share some of our favourite key learnings from two days of fascinating talks.

Store openings are outpacing store closures

In the doom and gloom of a post-pandemic, digitally-connected world, it’s easy to believe the think pieces on ‘the death of brick and mortar commerce’. Yet statistics prove the very opposite - appetite is growing for in-store customer experiences. The gap between the number of stores opening and closing continues to widen in favour of the brick-and-mortar being here to stay. Yet to succeed in the long term, retailers are increasingly looking to bring the best of digital experiences into the store. By choosing a composable in-store platform, retailers can have freedom to decide how they bring digital transformation their stores, the flexibility to work with the systems of their choice, and the agility to do it quickly, on their terms - see how they're doing it here.


Omnichannel experiences are more important than ever…

As technology advances and more retailers find innovative ways to personalise customer experiences, a strong connection between online and offline channels gives you the competitive advantage. The ability to capture data in one channel and use it to tailor the customer experience in another is key to ensuring both an increase in UPT and repeat sales. Find out more about how to make the most of data here.


…But separate apps build too much friction in your journey

Whatever additional tech being introduced to the customer should be frictionless and web-enabled to support your sales, not stifle them. Instead of developing yet another app for customers to download, some forward-thinking retailers are opting to deploy a progressive, browser-based web app to give customers access to a range of services in-store, such as barcode scanning, accessing the endless aisle of products, and enabling them to build baskets to be checked out in-store or online. 


Interest in curation is increasing, with implications for store formats

It may sound obvious but worth reiterating: your store is more than just a showroom for your products, it’s a showroom for the lifestyle you’re promising. Storytelling extends beyond marketing your brand story - it needs to be felt when a customer walks through your doors. Curation is key to brand perception, and in turn can increase your sales. As retailers experiment with different store formats, new forms of selling that take advantage of the increasingly blurring gap between online and offline start to emerge. Take a look at how in-store composable technologies like Mercaux can bridge the gap to support a frictionless omnichannel shopping experience in new store formats.


If you feel inspired by the discussions at the event, and have any questions about your own in-store digital transformation journey, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

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