How Should Retailers Respond to Amazon Go? 7 Experts Weigh In

February 15, 2018

photograph of Amazon Go store front sign

Amazon Go opened up its first retail location in January 2018, sending shockwaves through the retail industry. Ed Burek, SiteSpect Director of Solutions Marketing chimes in on how brick-and-mortar retailers should respond. Ultimately, he says, retailers must utilize technology to optimize and personalize the customer experience they provide if they want to compete in the new landscape.

What should Brick-and-Mortars do?

Ed Burek, SiteSpect director of solutions marketing, says: While the rest of the retail world looks to avoid getting “Amazon’d,” Amazon just got “retail’d.” People are constantly looking to integrate the in-store and online shopping experiences, and Amazon Go exemplifies the company’s ability to leverage the more traditional image of brick and mortar, tied with its own reputation for digital innovation.

So, what does this mean for traditional brick-and-mortar retailers? It’s time to differentiate or call it quits. With the e-commerce giant optimizing every second of the customer journey, brands need to get smarter about how they curate a digital customer experience, even if they don’t have an e-commerce offering. In the past, retailers’ biggest differentiator was its in-store service and experience.

If brick and mortars really want to retain their loyal customers, they should look to develop a strategy that plays to their strengths both in stores and online, finding ways to create a personalized shopping experience that meets the needs of their target customers at every touch point. It starts with leveraging customer data not just on product preferences, but shopping behavior to gain deep insight into who their key shoppers are and better understand the new audiences they want to reach.

While traditional retailers may not be able to ever reach the same level of convenience that Amazon offers, they can differentiate their offering to be both anticipatory and tailored — setting themselves apart from the e-commerce giant and rebuilding the brick-and-mortar persona.

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