(This post is a continuation of an earlier post on the changing face of Airport Retail)

Airports are using technology to create engaging experiences for shoppers. QR codes, iBeacon technology, Virtual Reality and a host of other digital solutions are allowing airports to deliver added conveniences to passengers and boost their retail sales.

Virtual Reality

The latest in a plethora of digital possibilities to enhance consumer experience, Virtual Reality can take airport retail to the next step, allowing shoppers to experience the places they visit or the food they eat and even peak into the manufacturing process of products! Last year, Nestle used VR to promote their premium brand Cailler. Customers could escape to the Alps where the Cailler chocolates are made by wearing the VR headsets for a few minutes[i]. More recently, Audi launched a VR experience at the Munich airport which allowed car enthusiasts to experience the emergency breaking assistant in a simulation[ii]. The fact that Audi plans to launch more such VR experiences is proof of its success.

Augmented Reality

AR2_030517Airport smartphones app are tapping into Augmented Reality technology to improve the shoppers’ experience. Travellers can scan boarding passes to get more information about the flight – plane layout, meal details and even on-flight shopping information. But it doesn’t end there. Brands can use AR to flash promotions through the app, allowing shoppers to get additional details of products.

Experiential Shopping
Retailers often talk about the “golden hour” – those precious minutes when they have the passengers’ attention – and how important it is to convert curiosity into sales. Improved infrastructure, digitalisation of airports and retailtainment have allowed airport retailers to provide a unique shopping environment. Brands acknowledge the importance of tapping into to the consumers’ sensory awareness and are increasingly designing campaigns to tempt the customer through their unconscious. Dior’s Rose Garden at Doha is one such example – from the use of fresh flowers to launch their new range La Collection Privée to the possibility of engraving personal messages on the perfume bottles, the brand created an unforgettable experience for its customers.[iii].

With the increase in air travel accompanied by the evolution in travellers’ profile and access to new technologies, Airport Retail is set to soar in 2017!

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Disclaimer: This is a personal weblog. The opinions expressed here represent my own and not those of my employer.