Shoptalk partners on new RILA initiative
Shoptalk has announced a partnership with the Retail Industry Leaders Association focused on RILA’s newly launched (R)Tech Center for Innovation.
Through the partnership, Shoptalk will support the (R)Tech Center for Innovationas a member of the (R)Tech Innovators Network.
RILA will co-locate its first (R)Tech Advisory Council Meeting during Shoptalk, which will be held at the Aria in Las Vegas on March 19-22, 2017.
“As a partnership-centric organization, we support industry initiatives designed to modernize the retail and ecommerce dialogue and create a much-needed and productive new community that includes established retailers and brands, disruptive startups, tech and Internet companies, investors, media, analysts and more,” said Anil D. Aggarwal, founder and chief executive officer of Shoptalk. “We’re delighted to partner with RILA to help develop the (R)Tech Center for Innovation as a member of the (R)Tech Innovators Network, and look forward to having the very first (R)Tech Advisory Council Meeting held at Shoptalk.”
RILA, together with Accenture, has launched the (R)Tech Center for Innovation, and an accompanying “(R)Tech” brand for the retail, innovation and policymaking arenas. The (R)Tech Center for Innovation’s mission is to help retailers navigate the industry’s transformation, and to spur the adoption of the “(R)Tech” term within the retail innovation ecosystem.
“Shoptalk has created an important new community of influencers and innovators,” said Sandy Kennedy, president of RILA. “(R)Tech is the confluence of retail and technology. As we look to spread this ethos throughout the retail ecosystem, RILA’s partnership with Shoptalk allows both organizations to more effectively serve the needs of the industry, which have changed considerably in the last several years.”
Registered Shoptalk attendees interested in meeting with RILA onsite at Shoptalk can apply to do so here.
ICSC: Technology and personalization drive the retail experience
As shoppers demand a streamlined, more personalized shopping experience, retailers are adopting solutions that can draw customers into their stores.
This was revealed in the “ICSC Retail Technology Survey.” The report, which was conducted February 16-19, surveyed 1,022 adults 18 years of age and older.
Consumers of all ages want more access to information — and they expect retailers to respond to this demand.
By 2020, 62% of consumers want access to products/sizes available in store without engaging a salesperson, and 55% of shoppers want to virtually view how home furnishings and accessories fit in a home before they make a purchase. Meanwhile, 54% of customers want to compile a shopping list on a store app and receive a floor map to locate products, the study said.
“Consumers are the drivers of demand, and they’ve made it clear they want more technology integrated into their shopping experience,” said Tom McGee, president and CEO of ICSC. “Our study shows that consumers are calling for access to more information in stores. The retailers who innovate in this area, make the experience more efficient and better inform the consumer, will win at the register.”
Click-and-collect has been the best example of this innovation. Nearly three out of four consumers (73%) have bought a product online from a mobile device and picked it up in a store. Specifically, 87% of millennials and 79% of Generation X use their mobile device to make a click-and-collect purchase.
Mobile is becoming such a strong influencer that 71% of consumers have one or more retailer apps on their phones, and 74% of shoppers access these apps at least once a week. Diving even deeper, 86% of millennials access a retailer app weekly, followed by Generation X (74%) and Baby Boomers (61%).
Meanwhile, 37% of consumers have used a digital assistant (i.e., Siri) to build shopping lists or to place orders to later pick up items in stores, and 35% of consumers have used a mobile pay option, the study revealed.
Personalization also remains a key focus for consumers. In fact, many seek out retailers who will deliver customized results. For example, 80% of those who have mall/shopping center apps choose to receive notifications about sales/promotions and/or special events while shopping.
Forty-four percent (44%) want to receive access to apps or screens that make it easy to get information such as ingredients in products for allergies, dietary needs. Meanwhile, 43% of consumers are receptive to the idea of retailers personalizing prices based on their shopping patterns and demographics.
Another 39% of shoppers said they would visit a mall or shopping center more often if they received alerts from stores that are selling products they are interested in purchasing, data showed.
“Technology creates innumerable opportunities for retailers to better reach – and convert – consumers,” continued McGee. “Collecting data on a shopper’s specific buying habits can create a healthier connection. Through closely understanding the wants and needs of shoppers, retailers can drive more store visits and create a stronger bond.”
RILA and Accenture launch tech innovation center
The Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) and Accenture on Monday announced the launch of a new initiative that will explore the impact that technologies such as artificial intelligence and virtual reality will have on the retail industry.
RILA’s new (R)Tech Center for Innovation will also help retailers create innovative ways of doing business.
RILA collaborated with Accenture on the new venture, and Accenture will actively work with RILA to shape the overall program, conduct joint research, and bring together retailers and technology start-ups to explore the industry transformation that is being driven by digital technologies.
(R)Tech is a new term coined by RILA to describe the confluence of retail and technology. An (R)Tech company embodies the core values of both those industries – global and local, nimble, and entrepreneurial – to win the loyalty of today’s empowered consumers.
“We are excited to collaborate with Accenture as we launch our (R)Tech Center for Innovation,” said Sandy Kennedy, president of the Retail Industry Leaders Association. “Today’s most recognized retailers are entering a new age and it all starts with (R)Tech – where retail meets technology. The Center will bring together some of today’s most beloved retail brands with tech’s brightest stars. Through research and relationships, we hope to further retail’s commitment to fostering cultures of innovation that benefit industry and our customers.”
The (R)Tech Center will address five key industry needs by:
1. Providing authoritative research: This will include retail innovation benchmarking, trends, and analysis.
2. Connecting to innovation: The center will be used to connect retailers to innovative technologies, companies and ventures, from around the world.
3. Fostering innovation: Assist the industry in creating cultures where innovation, creativity and change can flourish.
4. Activating innovation: Assist retailers in implementing change management, putting new insights into action and integrating emerging technologies and new innovations across the company.
5. Burnishing reputation: Build reputation for retail in innovation hubs and with policymakers and retail talent.
RILA has formed the (R)Tech Advisory Council whose members include: AutoZone, Best Buy, Coca-Cola, DICK'S Sporting Goods, Energizer, Foot Locker, GameStop, Kroger, Lowe's, QVC, Target, Unilever, VF Corporation, Walgreens, and Westfield.
Also, as part of the (R)Tech Center for Innovation launch, RILA has established a new (R)Tech Innovation Network to connect recognized tech innovators and venture capital firms with retail brands. Network members include: Andreessen Horowitz, Bain Capital Ventures, Commerce Ventures, Facebook, Greylock Partners, Google, GSVlabs, Shoptalk, Techstars, and XRC Labs.
“Today, U.S. and global consumers are driving change in retail at an unprecedented rate. Changing consumer values, preferences, and lifestyles, have led to disruption in virtually every industry; retail perhaps more than any other,” said Jill Standish, senior managing director of Retail at Accenture. “Through (R)Tech we believe Accenture and RILA can foster innovative business practices that will help shepherd retail into the future.”
To coincide with the launch, RILA and Accenture released an inaugural blueprint: “The Emergence of (R)Tech: A Blueprint for the Confluence of Retail and Technology,” to highlight how technology is disrupting the retail industry, the associated challenges and opportunities, including details of the steps needed for retailers to succeed by taking advantage of the technological disruption.
To learn more about the Center and its future activities, visit rtech.org.