This Week in Retail: What you need to know about Apple Watch, source tagging, online reviews, and more

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Howdy Venders, and thank you for swinging by our latest issue of This Week in Retail!

As always, today’s roundup has some great content to keep you abreast with the latest in retail. From an article on Apple Pay to a piece on levering online reviews, today’s post is packed with info that’ll help you keep up with savvy shoppers.

Read away!

1. 3 questions retailers must ask, and answer in order to survive – “The ultimate disruptor of retail is that the power has shifted to you the consumer,” writes Chris Petersen. With consumers having more power and knowledge behind purchase decisions, merchants can no longer rely solely on the 4 Ps (product, place, price, promotion) to make sales. You have to be more customer-centric and ask the right questions in order to connect with, and convert customers. Read Chris’ post to learn what questions to ask and how to get answers.

2. The state of the consumer – How have shopping habits changed over the past year, and what drives purchasing decisions? How have low gas prices influenced consumers during the past few months? This insightful conversion between the NRF’s Kathy Grannis and Pam Goodfellow of Prosper Insights & Analytics sheds light on the answers to the questions above (and more). If you’re looking to get some insight into the state of consumers these days (and you totally should), be sure to check it out.

3. Global source tagging and the future of retail – If you’re looking to prevent shoplifting and merchandise theft in your store, you may want to read up on source tagging—“the process of embedding an Electronic Article Surveillance (EAS) label into the primary packaging or into the product itself at the point of manufacturer to protect the item from shoplifting.” Read Tony D’Onofrio’s post on source tagging to learn more about its benefits and how retailers are adopting the technology.

4. Apple Watch aims to alter payment and shopping experience – Will Apple Watch increase (or speed up) mobile payment adoption? It may be too early to tell, but there’s certainly some potential. Read this post by Will Hernandez to learn more about how Apple Watch works with Apple Pay, and check out what other players in the industry are saying–and doing–about the technology.

5. 86% of consumers believe ratings/reviews are essential to the shopping experience – Reviews are an incredibly important aspect of the shopping journey. According to a report by PowerReviews, a vast majority of consumers (94%) “consult reviews during their browsing and buying journey.” What does this mean for retailers? Well, as PowerReviews CEO told Retail TouchPoints, retailers and brands have to provide shoppers with the information they need to make confident purchase decisions, present it in a compelling format and make it available across channels.” View Alicia’s post to find out more about how consumers approach reviews and what retailers can do about them.

About Francesca Nicasio

Francesca Nicasio is Vend's Retail Expert and Content Strategist. She writes about trends, tips, and other cool things that enable retailers to increase sales, serve customers better, and be more awesome overall. She's also the author of Retail Survival of the Fittest, a free eBook to help retailers future-proof their stores. Connect with her on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Google+.