The refurbishment of retail

SINGAPORE (EDGEPROP) - Experiences pervade retail. Especially here in the Asia-Pacific. What does this mean though? Simply put, as consumers become more sophisticated, so too do the retail offerings they seek. Landlords and retailers, in turn, have to upgrade their malls and physical stores into experiential hubs where sensory stimulation and memories are born.
The proliferation of online retailing has allowed consumers to access countless products at the mere click of a button, so the need for retailers to deploy new strategies comes as no coincidence. The function of a retail store, then, now extends beyond providing an outlet through which purchases can be made, to quenching shoppers’ thirst for entertainment and pleasure. This fusing of shopping with entertainment is known as retailtainment.
Retailtainment, not dissimilar to other marketing initiatives, sits on a spectrum. An instore yoga class for an athleisure line serves as one example on the low end of the spectrum, while an indoor theme park is a more drastic marketing effort on the high end.
The function of a retail store now extends beyond providing an outlet through which purchases can be made, to quenching shoppers’ thirst for entertainment and pleasure (Pictures: CBRE)
The interactive experiences offered by retailtainment allow brands to occupy mental real estate in the minds of potential and existing customers in a way that online shopping cannot achieve. Retailtainment efforts, then, provide a necessary counterpoint to e-commerce’s disruptive influence. There is no war between technology and retail, though – one needn’t upend another. Through leveraging data-driven insights on competitor performance and consumers’ behaviour and preferences, retailers can tailor optimal marketing strategies to increase footfall and revenue. For example, identifying which areas a shopping mall’s patron frequents after office hours can help a landlord in determining which tenants should be part of the F&B mix.
The rise of retailtainment in the region (over 200 retailers have incorporated activity-based leisure in Tier 1 Chinese cities since 2018) points to an evolvement in consumers’ pursuit of pleasure. This is not to say that in the past, shoppers did not enjoy leisurely experiences – but they are now more willing than ever to spend money on entertainment. Euromonitor data projects an additional spending of US$825 billion ($1.15 trillion) by 2030 on experience-based retailing. This trend...