February 17, 2021

Retail Gone Virtual: The Rise of Interactive Shopping

It’s 7:30 am on a workday and your alarm is ringing. You switch it off and get out of bed. But your alarm is already one step ahead of you: the lights in your bathroom have turned themselves on and, down in the kitchen, your coffee maker is running by itself. 

That’s because your alarm, like many of the devices in your home, is a smart device—capable of much more than what meets the eye. As you brush your teeth, Alexa reminds you what your schedule is for the day and tells you what the weather is like outside. 

You’re getting dressed when your phone—connected to your smart doorbell—notifies you that your Amazon package has arrived. You use two-way talk to let the driver know that leaving it on the steps is perfectly fine. After a quick breakfast, you leave the house—Alexa reminds you to take an umbrella—and your door locks behind you automatically. 

It doesn’t end there. While you’re out, your  robot vacuum starts and keeps pet hair off the carpet. Your voice-controlled oven with a built-in temperature probe tells you when food is cooked perfectly. In an emergency, your smoke detector announces which room triggered the alert and turns on the lights in your house to illuminate the quickest exit route. 

Smart Shopping for Smart Products

Smart homes are no longer a distant future. All the technology featured here is available for purchase right now. But there’s a catch we’re all familiar with—how do you know which products are ideal for your needs? Which devices are compatible across each other and your existing devices? Most importantly, which products give you the best value for your hard-earned dollar? 

The answer to these questions lies in something called interactive shopping. Smart shopping for smart products—but it doesn’t end there, either. Interactive shopping is the next step in the ever-evolving retail experience, regardless of whether you’re shopping for a smart device or any non-electronic product under the sun, from outfits to furniture to wallpaper.

The future of shopping has arrived—and it’s virtual. Here’s how interactive shopping is transforming the way people spend their money. 

But first—what exactly is interactive shopping? And why should you care?

What Is Interactive Shopping?

Retail redefines itself every half a decade or so. From the appearance of the modern department store to shopping malls to discount chains, each wave of change reconstructs the shopping experience—and customer expectations—until the previous iteration is nearly unrecognizable. In today’s digital age, retail has once again remodelled itself. And it’s easy to understand why—through the internet, people have access to an infinite selection of products in a matter of clicks and taps. 

Without leaving the comfort of your home—which is extra convenient in the face of a worldwide viral outbreak—people can order everything they need directly to their doorstep, from the essentials like food and, of course, hand sanitizer, to televisions and hair styling products. These days, all you need to do is lift a finger. 

But online shopping has its pitfalls, including:

  • Getting a feel for items is harder online. Obviously, physically touching a shirt or a sofa through your screen is impossible. But getting a feel for an item—how it might look in your home or on your body—is also much more difficult with just a 360-degree product viewer.  
  • A vast selection is daunting. No brick-and-mortar store could match the ocean of products available to consumers online. But an unending shelf has its downsides, all boiling down to one question: How do you know which product is best for you, out of the hundreds if not thousands of items with a similar function? 
  • You have to wait. While it still takes time for your item to be packaged and shipped, delivery timeframes have shrunk remarkably in recent years. With the modern-day Canadian’s busy schedule and the option of next-day shipping always available, waiting for a box to appear on your doorstep is less of an issue. 

Interactive shopping was designed so that you no longer have to compromise or settle. Using the latest advancements in technology, interactive shopping has broken down the barrier between in-person and online shopping without ever taking you offline. 

By filtering product information and taking advantage of virtual technology, interactive shopping eliminates the guesswork involved in online retail and lends you the ultimate confidence in your purchasing decisions. 

What does that mean for your shopping trips? Allow us to show you.  

How Can Interactive Shopping Benefit You?

As a customer, you want everything. You want the advantages of the internet, with its convenience, unending selection, comprehensive product descriptions, and honest reviews. And you want the advantages of brick-and-mortar stores—the ability to envision what an item would look like in your home, an immersive shopping experience, and confidence in your shopping decisions. 

The solution is to blend the digital with the physical. What can interactive shopping do for you?

1. Take Products Home Immediately 

A 360-degree product viewer is not enough. Interactive shopping allows you to see products in a home environment just like yours. 

Wondering which dining table would match the traditional feel of dark-coloured walls with white trim? Nervous about introducing the curved shape of a mirror or a lamp in a room you’ve designed with clean, straight edges? Worried that, while the dimensions are snug, a brass coffee table you intend on ordering will overcrowd your living room? 

With interactive shopping, you can strip the rooms in your house bare and redesign them to your heart’s content—all without lifting a single chair. 

2. Be Confident in Your Purchasing Decisions

Online shopping used to mean research. Which product is better suited for you and your home? Where can you find the best deal? With interactive shopping, you no longer need to ask. 

Browse a rich catalog of products that have been handpicked for your needs. Learn about smart devices that will enhance your everyday life from an objective source that tells you the pros as well as the cons. 

Interactive shopping personalizes the shopping experience by taking into account your lifestyle and preferences—and creating content that speaks to you.  

3. Experience the Benefits of In-Person Shopping Without Leaving Your Home

With interactive shopping, you can have an immersive shopping experience without filling your car with gas or—in the current COVID-19 crisis—risking your health and that of your loved ones. 

Better1 provides a shopping experience that caters directly to your needs. With a stream of content that’s created with only you in mind, we do all the research so that you don’t have to.

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