What Does The Future of Retail Depend On?

  • Mario Ortelli, Managing Partner of Ortelli&Co.

    Mario Ortelli, Managing Partner of Ortelli&Co.

Clienteling and a product offer that increasingly engages the end customer by focusing on brand, sustainability and jewelry casualization: according to Mario Ortelli, Managing Partner of Ortelli&Co., these are the main assets on which the physical store must focus in order to face the digital transformation challenge. «In order to understand which levers to activate to relaunch the point of sale, I would start from a recent study by McKinsey that underlines the growth of branded jewelry, with increasingly significant market shares compared to unbranded. Translated into a distribution perspective, this means that, for the big brands, distribution occurs increasingly through direct channels - one prime example is Cartier, which is 100% distributed internally. No longer able to rely on the big brands, multi-brand boutiques will therefore necessarily have to extend and diversify their product offer by selecting brands that are well able to engage with the end consumers, who are becoming more and more polarized in their consumption choices, inclined towards something of lasting value and a sustainable and possibly even more “casual” product in line with the trends that have been influencing luxury product demand over recent years. What should also not be underestimated is the trend for selfpurchasing, which retailers need to consider in their assortment and customer service choices. With digital transformation, if they want to play the game of “successful retailer” by adopting an omnichannel model, jewelers must also internalize a business model based on clienteling, or rather, a customer service offer that focuses on contact uniqueness, typical of the sartorial model. The main asset must therefore be the client portfolio, with the multi-brand store’s objective being to create in-store traffic managed with services that help create a relationship. Nevertheless, without digital support, which should be seen and experienced as a true marketing channel, the survival of the physical store is compromised even when the offer is an evolved product. And it is equally wrong to place all bets on the social channel, which is strategic for big brands but critical for small brands due to problems of scale in creating relevant content for customers.»

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