Events

The Checkout Event Recap: Retail Growth

Curt Munk, VMLY&R Commerce's Chief Innovation Officer talked about various retail channels from metaverse to livestreaming that brands can capitalize on to ensure growth.
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Retail Brew

· 3 min read

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Last week, we delved into the ins and outs of the DSW growth-strategy discussion that took place at Retail Brew’s The Checkout retail growth forum.

This week, let’s look back at the second forum of the day, where Curt Munk, VMLY&R Commerce's Chief Innovation Officer, talked about various growth opportunities for retailers, including in live streaming, social commerce, and the metaverse, along with the challenges that they’re faced with.

While e-commerce continues to be “terribly efficient,” per Munk, it’s taken the enjoyment out of shopping.

  • “We’ve been very successful with [e-commerce], so successful that I would wager we have taken fun out of e-commerce in some ways. It’s becoming terribly perfunctory, it’s becoming very efficient, but it’s not very inspiring,” he said.
  • “The idea of retail therapy that we all kind of grew up with, I mean, you got something psychological out of that shopping, buying experience. I’m terribly worried, as are many of my clients, about the fact that that’s going away.”

There are some ways brands can keep consumers coming back though, including optimizing on the metaverse and Web3, much like retailers like PacSun have.

  • “They’re creating avatar-specific sellable products on their website for use in Roblox and some of the other Web3 environments,” he explained. “Their No. 1 selling item is a set of golden angel wings that you use in Roblox. So think about that: PacSun, the apparel company’s No. 1 selling item is something you can’t physically touch that is part of your avatar online. So if there isn’t a clear metaphor for where this industry is headed, I think that’s pretty profound.”

Another channel that Munk expressed excitement about was live streaming, which despite its great success in China, remains underutilized by US retailers. A big plus for live streaming is that customers have the opportunity to interact with the host and ask questions about size, texture, or color and get them answered in real time.

“What brands are finding is that employees of the brand that’s doing the live streaming are the world’s best hosts because they can answer almost any question,” Munk said. “The difference is influencers are really skilled at selling themselves; hosts are really good at selling whatever it is that they’re hosting. And I think that’s a profound difference in orientation. So it also maybe speaks to the level of sophistication that consumers now have and the type of information they want."

Click here to watch the full conversation with Munk.JS

Stay up to date on the retail industry

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