Remote Retail: Tokyo Calling, Part One

Our Creative Director, Anda Kizi has been working remotely from Tokyo and picking up new techniques on how to create the best possible CX.

One of the most challenging things about the modern retail landscape is creating a cohesiveness between your online & offline offerings to make each more tangible to the other and ultimately create the best customer experience while building a level of brand trust.

Being in Tokyo, you’re bound to see a lot of cool things – it is the home of bright lights, quirky characters and crazy tech after all! One night while walking through Ginza, I noticed a huge line outside a corner store which sparked my attention. The line was for an Amazon popup bar. At first the line threw me off but after waiting, I was not disappointed.

As the world’s largest pureplay retailer, Amazon has recently decided to shake things up. They are opening popup stores around the world featuring tangible products they sell online in order to give customers a physical product experience and reach new markets. In a stroke of pure genius, they took this idea even further and mimicked their online personalised experience. In this Amazon Bar, there were no menus to order your drink, instead you would run through a series of questions via a tablet which will suggest an alcoholic beverage dependent on your mood. Very similar to what retailers do online using gift finders, product matching algorithms and predictive intelligence – make suggestions based on a user’s preferences or behaviour patterns.

We constantly tell our clients one of the keys to a successful ecommerce site is to mimic what you do in store and now Amazon have flipped this idea on its head to create on offline experience that leverages the best elements of the online one, creating a physical connection with the customer.

Rodd and Gunn have also created a seamless offline experience with their own experiential restaurant and store called The Lodge Bar. Located in Queenstown New Zealand, the bar oozes sophistication and class – much like their stores. It creates an atmosphere and vibe that comes with owning the brand. The bar mimics the branding of the in store experience so seamlessly, leaving visitors feeling more attached to the brand.  Rodd & Gunn Managing Director, Mike Beagley says “The bar has been so well executed that it’s had a halo effect for Rodd & Gunn” meaning that a positive experience with the brand, no matter what channel impacts the overall brand performance in the market.

Retailers are thinking of their customers in a different way and putting their wants first. What makes this evolution of thinking even more special is that it’s personalised for everyone. Customers want to feel like they are part of something, they want to be immersed in a brand they love but they also want to feel unique and like the brand is catering just for them, which can be translated into services like product customisation, personalised product recommendations or rewarding customers with lucrative loyalty programmes. It is really up to each brand to refine & design the experiences that best suit their customers and the way that they like to shop.

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Amblique is Australia’s industry leader in ecommerce and digital consulting, providing omni-channel strategies, retail practice and site optimisation services to help retailers and brand owners SELL MORE.
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