Remember when the store sales associate was the center of the shopping experience? Whether it was taking a shopper’s clothes to the dressing room, rummaging for different sizes, offering recommendations, or even just giving a simple hello and a smile, sales associates were once the undisputed face of retail.
Yet, as retail went digital and consumers began shopping online more, retailers and brands raced to integrate fancy in-store technology and apps, as well as onboard back-end systems to support the omnichannel experience. But the question remained – how to evolve in-store associates to leverage the continuous rise of technology in the retail industry. This is mission-critical now that connected consumers enter the store armed with more information than the associates. Amazon Go’s concept further drew questions about whether store associates were even necessary.