HomeNewsFuture of retailing is black and white as BT opens concept store

    Future of retailing is black and white as BT opens concept store


    BT has opened a new “Alexander Black” concept store in Milan that aims to give customers a tech-heavy taste of the future of retail shopping. 

    The store is embedded with over 40 “innovative” technologies including RFID, NFC, Bluetooth Low Energy, beacons and Wi-Fi, to provide shoppers with a more personalised and “intelligent” retail experience.

    BT said the concept store will help demonstrate how technology can be used to improve customer service and loyalty while providing a consistent brand identity across in-store, online and mobile channels.

    Technology demonstrations taking place in-store include providing staff with real-time visibility of stock across BT’s entire global supply chain, the operator claimed, in addition giving staff quick access to product and customer information.

    New in-store security and antitheft systems will also be demonstrated, alongside new methods for identifying counterfeit goods. The operator said that all of the solutions being showcased will be provided through managed mobile devices.

    Hubertus von Roenne, VP of Global Industry Practices at BT Global Services, said: “From interactive displays to digital screens where the content is personalised by relevant criteria, such as individual shopping history and demographics, there is a huge range of new ways to engage and delight the customers. 

    “Being able to integrate these multiple experiences to provide a consistent, joined up brand experience across all channels has become a key priority for retailers.”

    The Milan store opening comes six months after BT launched its first Alexander Black concept store in New York.

    Alexander Black is a fictional retail brand created by BT’s marketing team for the demonstration of products, services and solutions, the operator explained.

    Roenne said the aim of the initiative was to demonstrate how technology can be used to address “the very deep changes in customer expectations” resulting from the rise of online shopping.

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