Consumers are taking control of the retail market now through interactive shopping and purchasing practices in a way that is fundamentally changing the retail market and retailers must accept and embrace these changes.  Consumers do not look at retail as eCommerce, or omni channel, or brick and mortar, they look at it as simply retail and they are using the tools available to them to interact and engage in the retail market.  Consumers are using the tools to build a blend of virtual and physical markets that allow them to easily shift across tools and market channels to shop and then to purchase.  These changes and impacting all areas of the retail market in a manner that is picking up velocity and span as new tools across mobile and wireless technology are enabled.

 

Millennials are a large factor in these changes because of their comfort in technology and especially due to their comfort and proficiency in multi-player games.  The millennials are the leaders and the pioneers in driving these changes to the retail market and other consumer groups are quick to embrace the capabilities.  The changes driven by millennials are focused more on the virtual and social network aspect of technology capabilities because of their comfort with and within technology. Many of these changes are quickly dispersed across other consumer groups now because of the close proximity and interaction with millennials and other generations.  In other words, millennials are coming to the age where they are going out into careers where they interact with other consumer generations along with the regular interaction with and across family.

 

The blended virtual and physical retail markets are coming together to build a new retail market that incorporates aspects of these environments across all legacy market channels.  The large retailer must now embrace and incorporate these changes in order to remain successful in the future.   This will start as a very uncomfortable prospect for many of the larger retailers that are accustomed to control of their market and interaction with consumers.  Retailers must must now embrace collaboration across all partners and consumers in order to remain a viable and successful enterprise in the future.  With the current rate of change being embraced and driven by the consumer retailers cannot hope to control the interaction and relationship with their consumers. 

 

Consumers have taken control of the retail relationship and are using the tools available to collaborate with other consumers and third party service providers to support their demands and drive to redefine the retail market.  Consumers have also realized that they are now in control of their relationship with retailers and the manner in which they interact with retailers and they are using the tools to form a market that supports their own needs and lifestyle.  The new retail market is being developed by consumers now to support their lifestyle needs and retailers must realize and embrace these changes in order to survive in the future.

 

And now for the audience participation portion of the show…

ECommerce will have wide ranging impacts on both the retail and manufacturing sectors.  How can you focus these abilities to improve the consumer's experience?  Improving the consumer’s experience will require a re-evaluation of the sales channels, the manufacturing channels and practices and the supply chain channels and practices from the raw materials to the consumers’ homes.  In order to ensure and maintain success in this new reality you must harness the tools and capabilities in many new areas.  How can you support these continuously changing requirements?