Trend Watch

Mobile technology. Digital innovations. Social Commerce. These and many other trends are constantly being changed and being updated with new solutions, services and strategies. Retail TouchPoints editors stay on top of the latest activities and announcements, and bring you fresh perspectives on the hottest trends affecting the marketplace. Check back regularly for the latest new perspectives.

Fossil To Launch Line Of Wearable Devices

Fossil Group Inc., the lifestyle and fashion accessory company, is collaborating with Google to create and launch a line of wearable devices. The initiative is part of Android’s aggressive move into the wearable technology market. Google recently unveiled the plans for Android Wear, a version of the operating system designed specifically for smart watches and other wearable devices. A global fashion business with a portfolio of brands worth a total of $3.3 billion, Fossil Group anticipates the partnership will help add function and utility to the company’s already coveted products.

Applying Gamification To The Retail Business

While gamification can add fun and excitement to a retailer’s marketing or engagement strategy, it can also induce positive behaviors from customers and employees, leading to an enhanced brand experience and greater sales. During the webinar, titled: Gamification: The Long And Short Of It, executives from Badgeville and Stanford University discussed the ways retailers can use game-like techniques to meet various business objectives. “Fundamentally, gamification is taking techniques and the psychology behind games, and using it to get more people to do more stuff more often, and for longer periods of time,” said Steve Sims, VP of Solutions and Design and Founder of the Behavior Lab at Badgeville. “It can help your sales people be more productive, or it can boost engagement for your social channel or loyalty program.”

Trend Watch: Will Shoppers Rush To A Google Store?

At a rental cost that could reach $1,000 per square foot for retail space in SoHo, Google will need a strong business case to open a store in New York City (reportedly an 8,000-square-foot space on Greene Street, near the Prince Street Apple Store location), as its first venture into the brick-and-mortar retail space.

Will Wearable Technology Shake Up The Retail Landscape?

Wearable technology — including smart watches and glasses — is expected to become a “must have” for consumers over the next several years, and forward-thinking retailers such as Barneys New York and Kenneth Cole are preparing for an explosion in the market. Additionally, retail organizations such as The Container Store are beginning to implement wearable technology to improve productivity across business processes. Worldwide spending on consumer wearable technology will hit $1.4 billion by the end of 2014, according to the report from Juniper Research, titled: Smart Wearable Devices: Fitness, Healthcare, Entertainment & Enterprise: 2013-2018. By 2018, the market will hit $19 billion. Although Juniper concluded that device shipments will approach 130 million by 2018, wearable devices currently “represent a ‘nice to have’ and not a ‘must have’ for consumers,” according to the report.

Trend Watch: Will Twitter Commerce Be The ‘Next Big Thing’ In Retail?

There has been mass speculation regarding Twitter’s apparent foray into commerce spearheaded by images of a rumored Twitter Commerce service posted on curated consumer goods catalog It is unknown whether the screenshots — initially discovered by Re/code — were a mockup, prototype or accurate preview of what the service will look like. The screenshots outlined how the alleged Twitter Commerce service would work by integrating with a user’s Twitter account. Tweets published on the user’s Home or Discover feed will include a “Twitter Commerce” label, a description of the product being marketed and its price. Once the tweet was clicked, consumers would see an image of the product and a checkout button. If users clicked the button, they would be directed to a screen where they could enter their credit card information and billing address for delivery.

Verizon Investigates Breaches; Releases Security Report

On the heels of more potential security breaches being investigated by Verizon, the company is working to help retail companies be better prepared to fight security threats, following the release of its 2014 PCI Compliance Report. While PCI Compliance alone will not deter all breaches, it will go a long way to mitigating problems and improving the overall perception of the brand, noted Stephen Reynolds, Facilities Manager at Verizon Federal Network Systems, in an interview with Retail TouchPoints. But many retail organizations struggle to make PCI Compliance a business priority. “We continue to see organizations that view it [PCI Compliance] as a separate project,” Reynolds explained. “They must integrated it into existing security frameworks within the organization. If compliance is done right, then security is done right.”
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