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ECommerce technology continues to evolve and customer experience is becoming increasingly essential for the conversion of sales. Some retailers are currently planning to create and sustain customer value by providing sophisticated digital experiences that deliver orders more quickly and simplify ordering procedures. Drones, Droids & Augmented reality goggles are some of the most prominent innovations on the horizon that are expected to transform the eCommerce industry.

Technology in retail is no longer confined to e-commerce only, instead gathering a strong on ground presence in the stores as well. Countless retail stores have closed down in the UAE in the last two years, amongst them, was Sana, one of the Gulf’s oldest fashion retailers and stores from Chalhoub group due to the shift in consumer behavior from offline to online shopping. This signals a dramatic shift in the retail landscape. The growing availability of products easily accessible at one click is making it difficult for the retailers to attract people to stores across the globe. This scenario can soon be a reality in the UAE with the recent launch of and the ever growing ecommerce business in the UAE.

To cope with the current changing pattern of shopping behavior there are some technologies emerging to counter online shopping and keep people coming to the stores.

Augmented reality has the potential to reshape the retail environment, making it more immersive and efficient. Mastercard unveiled an augmented reality shopping experience for the first time which incorporates Masterpass and Identity Check Mobile with iris authentication for safe and seamless payments. Developed with Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., a subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated, and ODG (Osterhout Design Group), it delivers photorealistic augmented reality and provides consumers the ultimate customized, security-focused shopping experience. This new AR experience from Mastercard will not only let shoppers view digital representations of products before they commit to a purchase, but also learn more about what they are buying, see additional options not available in the physical location to give the look and feel of an online buying environment and get instant recommendations or other information relevant to their unique experience.

The Neiman Marcus Group is a luxury retailer that owns stores like Bergdorf Goodman. One technology that Neiman Marcus has developed and is rolling out across its stores, according to Emmons, is the memory mirror.

The mirror allows customers to record and review their fashion try-ons, doing side-by-side comparisons, and sharing the videos via text, email and social media with anyone they choose. Neiman Marcus has also deployed sunglass and makeover versions.

Augmented Reality & Virtual Reality will change the future of Retail shopping. In the future, retailers can utilize these technologies to align forward-thinking business strategies so they can possibly obtain an advantage over the fast changing market.


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