Last month, Amazon announced it would open its second bricks-and-mortar bookstore in San Diego. Its first physical bookstore opened last year in Seattle, setting off a flurry about what that meant for the online retail giant and the future of retail itself.
According to UK tech news site IDGConnect, the physical store is part of ” a general shift towards data driven omni-channel customer experiences…the extensive customer data now available via online channels means companies can now provide a range of targeted customer experiences to suit every purpose. Advanced analytics also means that companies can better stock stores based on up-to-date sales information.”
Ross Mason is quoted in the article; he points out that “an API approach is emerging where retailers can connect their front end systems with their back end systems…this creates a seamless experience for their shops, no matter if they are online shoppers, in-store-customers or both.”
Amazon's physical shops provide not only a retail channel that customers want, but the free exchange of data in omnichannel retail also provides ever more personalized product recommendations, reviews, and services based on browsing and purchasing patterns. One of our customers, a Top 4 UK food retailer, used cloudhub to integrate data across their online and brick-and-mortar stores to get a single view of their customer as well as create more effective and more personalized marketing.
Forrester released a study in January of this year which forecast that the store of the future will be powered by real-time analytics technologies that understand shopper behavior across the entire shopping journey. Acquiring and using data will be the key to success in retail in the 21st century, and that's made easier through an API-led approach to data integration.