Monday, March 23, 2009

Seeking Better Ways To Communicate With Customers?

I had an interesting conversation with retail industry analyst Barry Wise the other day that seems timely as we launch our Retail Solutions Online Blog. The two of us were discussing the future of retail self-service technology and how retailers need to find better ways to communicate with customers, in particular Gen Y. A tech-savvy group, Gen Y consumers seek out self-service checkout and kiosks, sometimes preferring to wait in a self-service line rather than going to an empty aisle with a salesperson.

I witness Gen Y’s tech passion daily: I have a 16-year-old daughter who’d rather text her friends than call them. “Why do I need to talk to them?” she said when I asked if one call would be easier than 10 back-and-forth texts.

As a retailer, are you taking advantage of Gen Y’s tech obsession? “At two different conferences I recently attended, the emphasis was on the tech laggards — the ones who aren’t doing anything yet — who are going to get left behind if they don’t find a way to communicate and do business with the younger generation,” said Wise, an Epson senior marketing consultant, during our phone call.

Like retailers, Retail Solutions Online is actively seeking ways to communicate better with its customers — readers like you. We hope this blog leads to more direct, frequent interaction; lively discussions; and timely retail advice that you can use to grow your business. We’ll link to relevant stories on Retail Solutions Online (such as how the latest BI software can drive sales for you) and across the Web, and we’ll initiate dialogues we hope you’ll find rewarding.

Bookmark us and check back regularly for the latest retail news, analysis, updates, conversations with industry leaders, and engaging comments from readers like you.


  1. It's interesting you mentioned about texting, John. We were at a party this weekend and my 10 year old had no company. She kept texting her dad (who was 10 feet away, busy talking to others) - "I am bored", "When can we leave", etc.

  2. i guess the younger generation feeling comfort to text to express what exactly they want rather than asking diretly.

  3. It's funny but I've seen not just kids but older people adopt the same habits...they would text instead of just picking up the phone and talking.