A Crisp, New Feel for Fall Retail
From the lack of trees, it might be hard to tell, but the fall season definitely leaves its mark on cities. Not just the coming of cool weather, but the change in the mindset of the shopper. The days of skipping out of the city for relaxing summer weekends have come to a close. Urbanites are now back in the full swing of city life. Which is why businesses appropriately use this time to do the big breakout launches of their new offerings — from fashion to technology to back-to-school supplies. With the sudden flood of these new products, brands have an even greater challenge at retail — convincing shoppers what sets their product apart from the competition. Of course, with limited urban space to communicate this message, brands rely more and more on unorthodox approaches in the digital and real worlds to get their messages in front of shoppers. Unique approaches that are sure to have consumers talking and the Urbanist taking note and ready to report on.
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Product Positioning With Style
Other than getting grateful passengers from A to B for less, Uber is now looking to drive business sales with the addition of Corner Store on the app. The new service is rolling out in the Washington, D.C. area right now. For that specific region, the app features an area labeled Corner Store where people can access to order all types of everyday items for purchase — diapers, toothpaste, and allergy medicine to name a few. Simply select the items you want. Pay for them via credit card. And your order will be delivered to you for free courtesy of an Uber driver. By creating this option, Uber ups its value and becomes yet another entry in the growing same-day delivery market that includes eBay, Google, and Amazon.
Faster Food Delivery
Instacart and Whole Foods Market are upping the game for online grocery shopping. The idea behind this start-up is similar to other grocery e-stores in that you order food online that gets delivered to you. The difference is that your order alerts a personal shopper who heads to the market to select the food you want and delivers it right to you. This fast service has found its way into stores like Kroger, Costco, and Whole Foods. Now, Instacart is looking to shave even more time off food delivery with its latest partnership with Whole Foods. Instead of dispatching personal shoppers to Whole Foods to do the shopping, they will already be positioned in the store — ready and waiting to fill orders. The benefit to the consumer is a shorter wait time because the personal shopper is already at the store. Plus, since the personal shoppers are situated in Whole Foods all day, they are more familiar where everything is located. Shoppers will also have the choice of getting the food delivered or picking it up at the store. For now, this new, streamlined shopping experience is being rolled out in Boston and Austin, but is looking to expand service. This unique partnership between Instacart and Whole Foods allows them to separate themselves from the food-delivery competition. It also offers a strategy of how grocery chains can go head-to-head with e-retail giants like Amazon and Google as they build their food delivery service.
Target is now throwing its hat in the image-recognition app arena. Similar to Amazon Flow, shoppers will be able to use their smartphones to capture images in Target ads to get extra info about the product. The app is just another example of retailers trying to make comparison shopping as easy as can be. Instead of having to find a barcode or QR code, just use their cameras to capture images. The app aligns with the shopper mindset of removing any sort of hassle from the shopping experience. People want what they want and don’t want to take any extra steps, like entering a code or scanning a certain part of the label first.
For more urban trends & insights, check out next month’s issue.
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