A (Real) Guide to the Store of the Future

How can you keep up with it?

When it comes to keeping up with the pace of change in retail and retail technology, I often feel like Wile E. Coyote in pursuit of the Roadrunner.

Left in the dust on a mesa of countless articles, links, videos, podcasts, and everything that, in good conscience, you ought to consume.

And as a result, a step away from being blind-sided by market transitions that have the impact of a flying anvil from above.

Fortunately, every now and then, I find a smart, deeply-researched mega-guide to the future.

One is the superb 65-page report The Store of the Future: Reimagining Retail in the E-Commerce Era by Matthew Fassler (and colleagues) at Goldman Sachs.

Full transparency:  I’m not a client of Matt’s.  The reason for this shout-out is all about expertise and quality; there’s so much solid, data-smart sense in this report that my print copy is deeply dog-eared and highlighted.

(Yes, I go old-school when I find myself referring to a document time and time again.)

Retail is Not Dead – It’s Changing

The theme is sounded from the first paragraphs with hammer-like clarity:  retail is not dead; it’s changing.  And it’s changing because of the ongoing share shift to e-commerce.

And there are two big sub-themes:

The store of the future is not about “experiences” and shiny objects in the store.  It’s about operating either as an optimized logistics machine (and thus, with ultra-convenient shopping options), or an optimized showroom.

Choose one.  Make it happen with and through technology.

And, it’s about an ever-deeper relationship with the shopper, achieved through the acquisition and analysis of high-quality data.

All enabled by technology.

It’s the future.  And it’s unfolding right now.

Let me know what you think.

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Jon Stine

About Jon Stine

Global Director Retail Sales at Intel. Jon Stine leads Intel’s global sales and strategy for the retail, hospitality, and consumer goods industry sectors. His CV includes leadership of North American retail consulting practice for Cisco Systems, and a prior stint at Intel, where he founded the company’s sales and marketing focus on the retail industry. His perspective on technology’s value in the industry has been shaped by advisory and project engagements in the United States, across the European Union, and in India, Australia, and the People’s Republic of China, and from 15 years of executive sales and marketing experience in the U.S. apparel industry, working with the nation’s leading department and specialty stores. At Intel, his current areas of research and engagement include the future of the store in this new digital age; how and where retailers turn data into competitive advantage; the role of technology within the new cross-channel shopper journey, and, the critical business and IT capabilities that industry success will demand going forward.