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Retailers Turn to Tech Tools to Create Excitement

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The “store of tomorrow“ is becoming more of a reality for consumers everywhere.

Retailers, including Neiman Marcus, Reformation and Coach, are transforming the traditional brick-and-mortar store concept into a more digitized and personalized experience. From virtual reality runway access to high-definition mirrors, retail is having a moment in technology advancement.

Neiman Marcus

Neiman Marcus has elevated one of its Texas-based department store locations into a digitally-powered destination for consumers. On Feb. 10, the retailer opened a 95,000-square-foot store at The Shops at Clearfork, which features “memory mirrors,” a fitting room paging tool and interactive directories, the Star-Telegram reported. Throughout the store, “memory mirrors” are available for shoppers to take high-definition photos of themselves in outfits, so they may make better purchasing decisions. In the fitting rooms, consumers also have access to a system called “Alert Tech,” which allows shoppers to page store associates if they need another fit or size. If consumers want to travel to other departments on their trips, interactive directories are available throughout the store. It is likely that Neiman Marcus will roll out more “future store” locations in the next five years.

Coach

Coach is making New York Fashion Week more accessible for all. The apparel and accessories brand, in partnership with Facebook, IMG and Simon Malls, is bringing its consumers a virtual reality experience focused on its New York Fashion Week F/W ’17 show. Starting Feb. 17, select Coach stores at U.S.-based Simon Malls, Facebook 360, YouTube and VR networks will feature the VR experience, which provides consumers an all-access pass of runway views and a preview of Coach’s upcoming products. Additionally, Coach will also provide exclusive New York Fashion Week show invites to fans at its Simon Malls’ Roosevelt Field location and sell exclusive items at 19 additional stores in the U.S. With the VR experience, Coach will enable consumers to take part in New York Fashion Week without leaving the brick-and-mortar environment.

Reformation

Known for its chic eco-friendly apparel, Reformation is upping the ante with its brick-and-mortar stores. On Feb. 21, Reformation founder Yael Aflalo is opening a new high-tech store in San Francisco which will feature touchscreens in lieu of racks and racks of clothes, Fast Company reported. After experiencing stellar sales but negative consumer feedback on her shops, Aflalo culled inspiration from other digitally-savvy retailers, including Apple and Tesla. Once Aflalo realized that a memorable sales experience was possible, she set out to create a heightened store concept. With the touchscreen system, consumers can scan through looks and select items in their size, which are then obtained by a sales associate and placed in their fitting room. The system’s automated process also provides Reformation with up-to-date data on popular styles, sizes and fitting room time for better retail activity in the future.

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