Retail technology and innovative thought leadership is driving the future of retail, and a new retail format may provide a creative new way to address the evolving needs of the retail customer.
ShopWithMe, a smart, interactive retail store, opened its doors to the public to showcase the latest advancements in retail technology. Located on Michigan Avenue in downtown Chicago, top retail executives from across the United States attended the opening to experience what the company claims to be “the future of retail.”
The founders of the company wanted to create a “smart store” to bring the best of both offline and online shopping together under one roof, while creating personalized experiences for every shopper. The store itself is completely mobile, and designed to be mass-produced so that the transportable locations can be deployed across the US or shipped anywhere around the world.
The 3,000 sq. ft. mobile structure allows different brands to temporarily inhabit a technologically advanced, highly interactive, and consumer-centered space. The structure is composed of four self-contained units connected by a bridge spanning 43 ft. Cutting-edge architectural systems allow for easy assembly, disassembly, and transport anywhere in a matter of days.
A full range of products will be featured on smart fixtures and customers will experience futuristic changing rooms that engage with the customers via interactive mirror displays, allowing customers to make purchases or request alternate products without leaving their changing room, providing unprecedented convenience for the customer. During their time in the store, shoppers will also have products recommended to them based on what they have been browsing. As you walk by, a shelf on the wall will actually move toward you to recommend you the item it holds.
“We provide the infrastructure and retail technology that brands need to activate a turnkey interactive retail store and begin selling seamlessly, overnight,” says Jonathan Jenkins, Founder and CEO of WithMe. “This is something that hasn’t been achieved by any retailer before.”
The format is intended to be a moving, global destination for brands that want to engage their customers in a new and personalized way. It is built for both traditional retailers that are moving towards smaller showroom locations and online retailers that are looking to expand into physical stores. Brands move from city to city, while providing a limitless access to inventory, creating an “endless aisle” for shoppers. The vision is to build a network of smart stores all across the world which retailers can activate and deactivate within days. This will allow brands to use the latest in retail technology to go from zero stores to fifty overnight and then down to zero again a few weeks later.
“We’re creating our very own store of the future,” says Danielle Jenkins, Co-Founder of WithMe.
ShopWithMe plans to bring its stores to Chicago, New York, Dallas, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Houston and Miami in the coming months and will begin shipping stores globally at the first of the year.