The world is rushing forward – new technologies in retail appear almost as often as in our homes and workplaces. The brands that best learn to exploit technological innovations will win the race for customers, be more recognisable and adapt to the changing landscape. More and more customers, and thus retail chains, are switching to so-called omnichannel or multi-channel shopping, e.g., buying online but picking up their purchases in a physical outlet (or vice versa). The combination of sales and communication channels results in a change in habits and tastes on both sides of the counter. A major challenge for retail chains is to create a shopping experience that is consistent, regardless of which channel the customer uses.

So, let’s look at the technological innovations and consider what impact they may have on how we shop and on the retail industry as such. 


The word is used to describe the virtual, digital world in which people will communicate with each other. I deliberately use the future tense, because – despite the grandiose claims of technology companies, including the Meta corporation, which manages, among other things, the social network Facebook – this technology is as yet neither as popular nor as useful as Mark Zuckerberg and the other Metaverse pioneers would like it to be.

However, there may come a time when the Metaverse will become immensely popular, so it is worth considering what impact this will have on the retail industry and how this potential can be realised.

Experts indicate that the Metaverse can expand the shopping experience of customers visiting brick-and-mortar shops. Product information, tips, recipes, or advice on how to navigate the shop are all benefits that an open-minded customer can gain.

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What if we added to this the possibility of virtually strolling through the shop of our choice to see if it has the product we are interested in and at what price? This would be very convenient, because who hasn’t at least once experienced the disappointment of visiting a retail outlet only to discover that our trip was in vain and that we must look for the product in question elsewhere.

Then again, as with many such pioneering technologies, we probably cannot currently envisage all the possibilities that the use of the Metaverse in retail will offer. We are left to wait and react to the opportunities.

New technologies in retail are changing the way we shop.

Smart shopping carts

A shopping cart is a seemingly simple invention – a basket for shopping, 4 wheels, and a handle to push. What is there to streamline? You’ll be surprised!

Technology is also entering this space and smart shopping baskets are no longer the domain of science fiction. The latest solutions allow products placed by the customer in the shopping cart to be automatically added to a shopping list, enabling them to be automatically paid for later. A screen mounted on the shopping basket can display all the products purchased, together with their total value, suggest further products and promotions or guide the customer to the place in the shop where the product they are interested in is located.

This is not only a convenience for the shopper. The outlet manager also has a lot to gain – mainly in the form of detailed knowledge of his customers’ behaviour, how they move around the shop, what their purchasing decisions look like, etc. And all this in real time! 

With this knowledge, customised promotions, adverts, and other advertising material can be served up to customers according to their needs and choices. The smart cart thus becomes smart POS material! This heralds a real revolution in retail, with new technologies offering unlimited possibilities.

There is another benefit of smart shopping carts. They make it possible to pay for purchases automatically – without having to lay them out and scan each product at the checkout. This is the next logical step in streamlining the shopping process and eliminating queues in shops following the introduction of self-service checkouts, which we wrote about here: 

Simply drive the full trolley out of the shop and the purchase amount is automatically debited from our account! Quick and convenient!

Smart tags

This is another example of how new technologies in retail can transform retail outlets as we know them. Smart tags placed on clothing allow staff to track the customer’s path around the store, facilitate merchandising decisions and help create the best possible shopping experience.

How does it work??
A smart tag is essentially a small sticker with a Bluetooth-enabled transmitter. It connects to a network of sensors located throughout the shop, providing information about the current location of a particular product, how many times it has been picked up and hung up by a customer, or how often it was taken to the fitting room.

It is a real gold mine of knowledge about consumer behaviour, customer tastes, or the quality of shop layout. With this information, the manager can make more informed decisions and the staff can save time previously spent searching for abandoned products or rearranging displays.

You can learn more about smart carts and smart tags, by clicking here:

These are just a few examples of how new technologies in retail can change how we shop. As you can see, the changes are not only affecting the e-commerce industry. Traditional shops, too, have much to gain from the upcoming changes.

It is a good idea to keep an eye on them so that you can take advantage of this potential and not be left behind. As a producer of retail furniture, Perfecta is tracking all the changes. Follow us and stay updated!


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