Retailers must heed e-commerce

Multimedia designers working for clients engaged in European e-commerce should seek to complement and offer diversity to retail design, according to a report about to be published by the Interactive Media in Retail Group.

According to its Integrated E-retail paper, retailers must learn to adapt high street stores to harmonise with on-line activity, not seek to emulate giant, US-based Web-only operations.

IMRG director of development Steve Johnston says it will be down to existing retailers to offer Internet ordering facilities both in-store and from home, and existing stores should consider adapting to include e-commerce areas.

“In Europe customers have different relationships with retail environments than in the US. Stores need to serve as a point of contact for e-commerce customers. They might offer a point of collection or let customers go in store to order through a touch screen kiosk,” he adds.

The report, published this week, contains a code of practice for Web retailers and recommends strategies for e-commerce in Europe. It has been developed with on-line business consultancy Clarity, through a series of workshops. The IMRG consists of more than 400 interactive retailers in 20 countries.

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