Convergence in the retail space can be seen as the merging of media, digital technology, and creativity to produce a better experience for the customer. Before the establishment of my company, Devika, I (Ken) experienced and helped to create a convergent retail space for consumers. Part of my vision for Devika is to share my knowledge to help the next generation create meaningful and impactful businesses. For this reason, I would love to share what I learned about the retail space with you.
My experience in this space began when my family business transitioned from a wholesaler of high-performance car parts to an online retail space that sells car parts directly to the consumer. We named the company Speedmaster and it is now the highest selling car parts retailer in Australia.
This success has led me to talk about the convergent retail space on numerous occasions. One of these occasions was at the 2015 Online Retailer Talk. My insights were later published on the Global Entrepreneurship Library which was presented by the Kauffman Foundation and the World Economic Forum.
After being nominated for Best International Conqueror and Best In-Store Initiative, I was asked to talk about my journey with Speedmaster. The speech focused on, "Using Digital Technology to Create Convergent Retail Experiences," Which you can view below:
Note: There is a glitch at the 3-minute mark and the slide lags at the beginning.
While the Speedmaster website offers an exciting digital marketplace for consumers with an engaging and contemporary user experience, this is only one of the many aspects which contributes to creating a convergent retail space. Many of these other aspects I have implemented in my company, Devika. My experience has given me the exciting challenge of helping other companies harness the power of the convergent retail space.
Firstly, I learned to ensure that the user experience is always at the center of project development. Without a customer-centric approach, all other elements of the project have the potential to fall flat. Ultimately we sell an experience, designed to meet customer needs which requires focus to ensure they are as valuable as possible.
Secondly, I recognised the need for diversity both in my team and within the products I offer. This is as consumers are moving away from the silo mentality (staying loyal to one company) and are now looking for solutions across a wide range of brands. Undoubtedly, the Internet has played a huge role in this shift which is difficult to ignore. To embrace this change, I encourage diversity in the thoughts, ideas, and approaches to problems which are shared within my team. This is in order to provide a range of solutions to customers who have varying needs.
These two lessons have become the foundation that we have to build our own products (such as Kolb) and our client work on. The convergent retail space is only growing as the world becomes more connected online. Digital technology is growing at an exponential rate and while it seems hard to believe, we are only experiencing a small taste of its potential. My advice would be to embrace emerging technology to provide customers with a more personalized and involved experience. Accessible technology which is currently available includes virtual reality, augmented reality, artificial intelligence, and the internet of things. There is an increasing number of options for you to tailor your convergent retail space and better meet the needs of your customers.
Continue this discussion and contact us where we can find solutions and implement a convergent retail space.