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Adapting Curated Commerce to the Store

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Online retailers have mastered “curated commerce.” This is where distinctive product lines are created, which provide shoppers unique collections that are exclusive to that site.

With consumers seeing the endless possibilities and product lines that the online shopping sites offer, they are becoming more discerning and demanding for personalization, which is the driving force behind curated retail.

Retailers often rely on email marketing and sophisticated websites to show a selection of curated products to customers based on their personal taste and purchase history with that retailer. Curated commerce online is comparable to shopping in exclusive boutiques.

Curated retailing may be benefiting online shopping outlets, but what’s good for e-tailing is also a bonus for brick-and-mortar stores.

Fashion and home can really take advantage of this, since there are so many designers and lines, which are and have already reached out to the public in multi-media. Martha Stewart was perhaps one of the first arbiters and curators of style, who millions of consumers followed. People and brands like this have dictated style that shoppers want to emulate. And in this age of omni-channel communication and retailing, new curators have unprecedented access to social media, broadcasting, and publishing, where they can reach audience through blogs, postings and niche TV channels and programming.

Curated choices have a more authentic feel and are influencing buying behavior. Customers are more likely to buy a curated product and spread the word to their friends, allowing retailers to leverage their customer data and increase their revenue.

“The Line” is a website that stylists Vanessa Traina and Morgan Wendelborn started and their curated efforts have spotlighted unique products for home, fashion and beauty.

This is where the space between virtual and “street” become entwined because items on “The Line” are also available for purchase offline at “The Apartment: in the SoHo neighborhood in New York City. This looks like a real apartment where visitors can check out all goods available from The Line, plus see other big-ticket items that aren’t featured online, like a fox fur throw for $9,500.

Another new retail space in New York is “STORY,” which is curated like a magazine, changes themes like a gallery, and sells items like a store. Every four to eight weeks, STORY evolves into a new floor plan with new fixtures, products and merchandise to spotlight a new trend that can capture the consumer’s imagination (and pocketbook).

In November 2013, the theme was “Made in America,” where every item in the store was artfully arranged and complemented by descriptions and art, engaging the visitor on a journey across country to view the work of talented designers and crafters.

In this new retailing landscape, STORY is unique in the way it uses storytelling to engage and build emotional connections with the physical space as well as the products and people who created them.

TAGS: retail, retail trends, omni-channel, retailers,
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