Experts in retail, the property sector, logistics and politics gathered Wednesday (August 21, 2019) at the first Trade Congress in the Chamber of Commerce to discuss trade in future. Emphasis was on strategies, concepts and practical ideas and not least technological progress. Speaking during the opening, Kai Elmendorf, Vice President of the Chamber of Commerce, pointed out: “Sustainable trade needs solutions to interlink the advantages of analogue stationary and digital online trade.” The recipe for success lies in cross-industry talks and co-operation between all participants, he noted.
Pain points versus gain points
Traditional, stationary trade must focus more on the delivery of goods to meet the customers’ expectations on service, Elmendorf added. This will in turn change the demands on logistics. The present technological possibilities pose a great opportunity for retail, according to Oliver Leisse, the Hamburg-based trend researcher. “In future, a strategy of reducing ‘pain points’ and developing more ‘gain points’ must be adapted.” Factors that spoil the shopping experience, e.g. the cash register situation or the presentation of goods must change. Surprising value-added offers could make a difference and benefit the customer, Leisse noted.
Online and offline trade no longer clashing at Bonprix
A Bonprix pilot store called fashion connect in downtown Hamburg was presented by Daniel Füchtenschnieder, Managing Director of Bonprix Retail GmbH, as successfully merged online and offline trade. Bonprix, a subsidiary of Otto, is combining stationary retail with online shopping there and targeting women aged 30 and over. The shopper is guided through the store per app. The selected items are automatically delivered for fitting and the purchase is concluded on the app. “For us, personal and digital assistance goes hand in hand. This is a first step towards the future,” Füchtenschnieder added. The Hamburg-based online retailer Otto is also aiming to bridge the gap between online and offline retail and formed a joint venture called Stocksquare with ECE shopping centres in mid August.