Convenience and corporate culture: Retail insights from Contagious Now / Next / Why

Lena Roland

In the highly competitive retail environment, brands are constantly trying to find new ways of forging meaningful relationships with customers.

One way of achieving this is by identifying tangible consumer pain-points, and then providing solutions that address them. Katrina Dodd, a senior consultant at Contagious Insider, told delegates at Now / Next / Why, an event held by Contagious, a marketing and branding consultancy, in London in April 2014, that this trend has rapidly led to a "convenience arms race" in the retail sector – with customer service at the very heart of the battle for hearts and minds.

Consumers, she continued, have increasingly high expectations of customer service, which has prompted many brands to develop innovative services blending the digital and physical. One example is Amazon Lockers, an initiative from the ecommerce giant that enables its customers to collect goods ordered on the web from banks of lockers situated in a range of physical locations, rather than waiting for items to be delivered to their home. Amazon Lockers thus give customers greater freedom and convenience at the final stage of the path to purchase.