ADVERTORIAL: Five ways retailers will innovate over Christmas


Sainsbury’s advertisment

1. Matching online prices

As a way of curbing ‘showrooming’,  when customers look at a product in a bricks and mortar store and then buy it online for less, Walmart has entered an aggressive price war with online retailers, especially Amazon.

Many retailers will be watching to see if the practise increases sales enough to cover the considerably lower margins that this policy will create.

2. A robotic revolution

Not to be outdone, Amazon has mechanised its warehouses with a fleet of orange, wheeled robots – tripling its productivity according to some reports.

The fleet of robots are the result of the company’s purchase of Kiva Systems three years ago and have been rolled out to cope with the expected increase in demand over the lead up to Christmas.

3. The next generation of instore apps

In the wake of last year’s devastating data breaches, American retailer, Target, has heavily invested in its mobile strategy – buying analytics start ups and becoming one of the first retailers to embrace Apple Pay.

Its latest app includes an instore map, information on store specific deals, and a shopping list function that plans out a route for a shopping trip.

4. Marketing where it hurts

Christmas themed supermarket advertising is as old as advertising, but none of it compares to the controversial and powerful ad for British supermarket, Sainsbury’s. Made in partnership with a major charity for British veterans, the ad re-enacts the 1914 Christmas Day truce in the Western Front – and has sparked a vibrant debate around the ethics of marketing using images of World War One.

5. Blockbuster retail events

While not Christmas, e-commerce giant Alibaba’s sale to celebrate the Chinese holiday, Singles Day, which generated $9.3 billion in sales in 24 hours, has offered a look at the extraordinary potential of retail event marketing when combined with a powerful e-commerce platform. There will be a lot of interest in bringing this model to the western holiday period.

For insight from the biggest names in retail, including Walmart, Amazon, and Uniqlo,  join the Retail Leaders Forum on March 2 and 3, 2015 in Sydney.

Early bird prices finish on December 5.

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