Brick and mortar retail is in trouble: as ecommerce gradually erodes physical retail—effectively commoditizing the routine shopping experience—retailers are finding it hard to survive. Competition based on price alone is a prescription for failure; and ecommerce sites, based on their massive scope and scale, are capable of underselling any local merchant. Many consumers are looking for a shopping experience: one where real, live sales people know their customers, provide helpful suggestions, let them try out a product before they buy it, and who never say “no.”
What do consumers want? They want a predictable experience: one that feels the same, regardless of which retail location is visited.