The store of the future is about solving the problems of today in an innovative and meaningful way for the customer, said Sandrine Deveaux of Farfetch, during FashMash Pioneers.
Speaking to Rosanna Falconer, at a live FashMash Pioneers event in London, the managing director of the e-commerce company’s store of the future division, explained that her focus in not just on new technology for the sake of it, but on creating better shopping experiences driven by personalization.
Following the announcement of Farfetch’s Store of the Future concept in April 2017, Deveaux has been building a series of beta tests in place in Browns East in London, Thom Browne in New York and Chanel in Paris. But the result doesn’t mean big flashy screens or variations on augmented reality, as she is so often asked about.
Instead, it’s about better servicing the customer; understanding what they want when they walk into stores thanks to data, but also making things like the payment experience a much more seamless one.
She says the store of the future is really about offering the experience of Apple, but the convenience of Amazon, so as to keep in line with increasing consumer expectations.
And so the end goal, for her team, she says, is to provide brands and boutiques with full visibility around customer behavior and customer intent, mirroring what’s possible online in the offline space.
“85% of customers, we don’t know anything about them. So that’s what the store of the future is really getting to – it’s about how we leverage the platform we have with Farfetch, and try to really look at online behavior and take that online behavior into an in-store context,” she explains. This is something Farfetch calls “enabling the offline cookie”.
During the conversation, Deveaux also talks to driving disruptive innovation through healthy internal tension, how she’s changing the way luxury brands think, and why the ultimate sales associate for the store of the future might just be a unicorn.