Another set of predictions for the future is out and this one looks five years down the road and sees mobile playing an integral role in shopping.
One of the key forecasts in this report is that buying local will beat online. This according to the eighth annual “IBM 5 in 5” report, comprising a list of innovations that have the potential to change how people work, live and interact during the next five years.
The local shopping evolution is one of the five predictions, pointing to changes in the retail landscape.
The report points out that online stores currently have an advantage in their ability to learn from the choices made on the Web.
“Today, most physical stores are limited to the insights they can gain at the point of sale – and the trend of showrooming is making it harder to compete with online retailers who compete solely on price,” states the report”
IBM says that in five years, new innovations will make buying local du jour once again.
“Savvy retailers will use the immediacy of the store and proximity to customers to create experiences that cannot be replicated by online-only retail,” the report states. “They will magnify the digital experience by bringing the Web right to where the shopper can physically touch it.”
IBM’s vision is based on market and societal trends as well as emerging technologies from its research labs around the world.
The company expects that Watson-like technologies will equip sales associates to be expert about every product in a store.
The reality is that mobile will play an integral role in this new environment.
Mobile devices supported by cloud computing enable individuals to share what makes them tick, their health or nutritional needs, virtual closets and social networks, retailers will soon be able to accurately anticipate the products a shopper most wants and needs, according to the study.
IBM sees the store as transforming to immersive destinations with experiences customized for each individual, being able to offer shoppers a variety of fast pick-up or delivery options, wherever the customer is.
The report suggests that consumers will use mobile device to match items with their individual wardrobes, get recommendations from friends or be alerted if a product contains ingredients they are allergic to.
More shopping behavior predictions can be expected as we get closer to the New Year.
And it’s likely that they all in some way will involve mobile.