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How digital is taking over in-store retail

Digital is transforming the retail industry, according to Michael Durbridge, head of omnichannel at B&Q, and Kash Ghedia, technologies manager at Dixons Carphone, in a recent interview with One Connected Community.

"Digital is the pivot point around which the entire business operates," Durbridge explained.

His comments come as retailers are increasingly integrating digital at the heart of their businesses in order to improve the customer experience, through convenience, relevant interaction and personalisation.

Over time digital offers one-to-one customer conversations, according to Durbridge. "This provides an entirely personalised conversation with our customers."

Various surveys show that the store remains the number one destination to purchase goods. This creates a golden opportunity for innovative retailers to engage customers with memorable digital experiences that keep them coming back.

Immersive digital store experiences communicate a brand's story, increases sales and strengthen customer loyalty. But to get it right, retailers must focus on engaging customers from the moment they first interact with the brand, through their entire journey, until point of purchase and beyond. This requires true synergy between online and offline.

There are many innovative experiences popping-up – from virtual changing mirrors to augmented reality apps to the use of beacons powered by offline CRM data – but you must focus on what adds value, said Dixons Carphone's Ghedia.

Digital influences many aspects of our customer journey, he added.  

"We have already shared over 500 digital product lookbooks with customers in-store to allow them to see our extended technology ranges, and a deeper understanding of specific products through video demonstrations and innovative content."

It appears the ability to innovate and harness digital technology will set successful companies apart from the crowd, as the industry moves into the new era of retailing.

Jamie Harding, head of research at One Connected Community, commented: "This interview provides invaluable insight from leading retailers on how the store, digital technology and its ability to better connect customers, is very much at the heart of growth strategies in 2015."

For more information contact Jamie Harding on jamie@oneconnectedcommunity.co.uk or Tel: +44 (0)208 8193122

The full 5-page interview includes insight on:

Get the full interview with Michael Durbridge and Kash Ghedia here

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