There has been a ton of hype regarding the great Canadian retail boom – and for good reason too. But a new retail trend on the horizon is beginning to gain a firm footing, changing the face of Canadian retail yet again.
So what is this new trend?
The answer is simple: online retail companies are setting up physical stores in the form of pop-up shops.
While I know it may feel like just yesterday that brick and mortar retailers were scrambling to build an online presence and devise an air-tight omni-channel retail strategy, the tides are starting to turn.
Even though strictly online retailers have been hesitant to admit the need for a physical store, they are coming to terms with the fact that while more people are buying online, consumers still need the experience associated with in-store shopping.
In fact, the single biggest reason that people DON’T buy online is that they want to touch and feel merchandise.
As a result, online retailers are beginning to set up a physical presence in the form of pop-up stores, which are creating a distinctive brand experience and forging a true relationship with customers beyond a computer screen.
A recent Financial Post article, Retailers Turning to Clicks-And-Bricks Strategy to Find New Customers, details how this trend gained steam with both large and small retailers in Canada – and how this new strategy can help retailers expose their merchandise to a completely new audience.
Montreal-based online retailer Frank & Oak, for example, used this strategy to better connect with consumers by opening up a pop-up location in Toronto for a week.
Another online retailer, Shopify, put a twist on this approach, by holding two “Popify” pop-up stores to highlight its online retailers with a week-long retail tour in Toronto, promoting its online store platform through workshops and events.
If you’re interested in learning more about the transforming world of retail in Canada, download our report “On the Edge: A Retail Boom in Canada.”