Billed as “Retail’s Big Reunion”, Shoptalk 2022 certainly lived up to its name. With almost 10,000 attendees and 250 speakers traveling out to the convention center at Mandalay Bay, there was excitement and openness to discussing strategies for pushing the industry forward, from the flights out, to the Mercaux Booth and Networking Events, all the way through to the elevator rides at the end of the day. In-person events were back with a bang.
So, what were the big talking points of the show? I popped my head into as many of the talking tracks I could to listen in to what the leaders in the industry were prioritizing in their transformation roadmaps. Here are a few of the highlights from the show:
1. The Store is very much alive
Steve Miller, SVP, Strategy, eCommerce, & Analytics, DICK'S Sporting Goods shared that 80% of their total revenues now derive from the store, which is an incredible recovery from uncertain times during the pandemic when the same retailers with a physical presence shared the equivalent was being generated solely through ecommerce.
Nancy King, SVP, Product Engineering, Target shared how physical retail for them is in the "center of the customer’s whole experience". She also gave an impressive example of how the store is being viewed more than a simple sales channel - a massive 95% of their digital orders are now fulfilled from stores, showing how physical retail is not just surviving, but evolving and thriving.
2. Priority to Digitizing the store
Ken Worzel, Chief Operating Officer, Nordstrom’s shared his “closer to you” philosophy and strategy - bringing stores, associates and inventory together to deliver exceptional customer experiences. He declared that it has been “game changing” bringing people and digital together, across all their channels, and shared that in-store tech had now evolved from being a “shiny nice-to-have” to actually now delivering on customer experience goals.
3. The importance of Omnichannel Product Discovery
Marc Mastronardi, Chief Stores Officer, Macy's shared that for him, it was all about product discovery for the store, and how they could inspire customers to purchase products they didn’t know they needed. One concept they tried is “in-store digital styling”, and Marc shared that this has now become one of their "most valuable real-estates in store" for customers to discover new products.
4. A Frictionless in-store experience
A top priority for Anshu Bhardwaj, SVP, Technology Strategy & Commercialization, Walmart and is why they’ve invested heavily in their “checkout with me” scheme. Equally, a lot of retailers I spoke to on the Mercaux stand were laser-focused on making the last step in a path-to-purchase as frictionless as possible with next generation checkout solutions.
This sentiment was mirrored by Yael Cosset, SVP & Chief Information Officer, The Kroger Co. who has been focused on simplifying the customer journey and deploying solutions that can inspire the customer... without necessarily having to speak to them.
5. QR Codes have experienced a revival
Scott Perry, EVP Digital Marketing, Jerome's Furniture shared that they had been observing customers in-store and noted they were all on their phones, searching online to obtain better product descriptions and discover items in the endless aisle. Scott's team set themselves a challenge to see how they could improve the customer's in-store experience so they didn't have to find the content themselves online. They achieved this by introducing QR codes that linked directly to product descriptions and inspirational content for the product they had in front of them.
If omnichannel product discovery, inspiring customers in-store and delivering a frictionless experience are all aspirations in your transformation roadmap, then checkout Mercaux's QR Web App as a quick and easy self-service solution that ticks all these boxes for your customers.
If tackling the last step in the path-to-purchase is keeping you awake at night, check out our latest solution disrupting the checkout experience in-store - Next Generation Composable POS.