VM&RD Breakfast Meet on Retail Fixtures - Bangalore, in association with INSYNC
This special focused round table meet was attended by leading brands and retailers in the city, to get latest updates on increased interest & investment towards creating a connected retail ecosystem.
VM&RD Breakfast Round Table Meet focused specifically on retail fixtures and in association with INSYNC Shopfittings was held recently in Bangalore to discuss about the latest in ‘Connected’ fixturing trends and common issues & solutions in this domain. This special focused round table meet was attended by leading brands and retailers in the city, to get latest updates on increased interest & investment towards creating an effective connected retail ecosystem.
Moderated by Surender Gnanaolivu, Advisory Editor at VM&RD, the session began with few interesting infographics on rapid growth of internet users in India and the increased participation of the middle class in online purchases which set the perfect tone for the discussion on creating ‘connected stores’. A video on the ‘Amazon Go’ concept store was a great example set before the participants to show the newage shopping journey of the customer who wants to just pick up merchandise, selfcheckout “I think people look for transparency and information at the shelf level, as many customers don’t come with a fixed mind. This is seen especially with women, who are always exploring new trends, merchandise and accessories. The smart or connected shelf allows the customer to browse and explore in a more interactive way, help them choose products according to specifications and even check-out in a hassle-free way,” by using smart phones and walk out of the store.
Discussing this broader concept of connected retail ecosystem, the meet delved deeper into the nuances of the ‘connected shelf’ or smart fixture systems that strings in various elements such as lighting, signage, digital screens
for endless aisles and self-check out systems. Showcasing their new-age smart shop-fit offering, INSYNC also presented the Fit n Light range which incorporates digital interfaces that enable brands in creating a ‘connected shelf’ at the store.
The participants at the meet discussed on four main topics, which included:
Impact on investments in environment design, with international entrants entering Indian retail landscape
Key considerations while looking for connected fixtures
Stakeholders of the company involved in creating a connected store
Should retail solution providers come in as partners or suppliers in creating a connected store.
With omni-channel strengthening its role in retail today, most brands agreed that creating a ‘connected store’ is inevitable in the future, with companies also allocating budgets and resources for the same. According to the participants, the key aspects which would enable the success of smart fixture systems in retail environment include: customisable designs, serviceability, ease in training store staff, innovation and regular upgradation of the system to meet new demands. Lastly, it was also stressed that various functions/ departments starting from manufacturing to cash-till must be roped in to ensure the success of the ‘connected store’.
The discussion also highlighted the importance of involving retail solutions providers right from the concept stage till the last mile, which ensures that these smart solutions are provided to meet design aesthetics, budgets, workability and most importantly ROI.
The meet was successful in initiating a dialogue between the key stakeholders in the industry, nuances of the ‘connected store’ and fixture solutions that enhance convenience of consumers to browse, shop, bill and walk out with ease.
Huzefa Merchant, Founder, INSYNC Shopfittings