Digitalisation hit retail like a perfect storm. Online shopping combined with the internet in our pockets to mean we could shop from anywhere: the bus, the sofa, the bathroom… Traditional retailers are under pressure to find innovative new approaches and business models. So how can the industry adapt and give people what they need and want?


Online shopping has surged in recent years, yet 90% of all purchases are still made in physical stores. It’s partly that we still want to touch and test goods. But beyond that, we crave experiences. And smart retailers know how to capitalise on this desire.

There’s a strong trend towards combining shopping with dining or special events – from tastings to courses, VIP evenings, fashion shows and special offers. And by embracing new technology, retailers have opened up new horizons for physical stores.


Interactive mirrors that morph clothes onto you via 3D imaging. Voice commerce, where a digital assistant helps you buy products. AI systems combined with sensors that let staff know when products need to be restocked. A seamless experience spanning online and physical shopping channels.

It’s a brave new world that demands unprecedented connectivity and the right IT infrastructure. Fast data processing and scalable networks are key to giving customers the experiences and service they want. What can next-generation network technology do for your business?


This retail revolution is driven by consumers. We want convenience, personalisation and exceptional experiences. And the key is data. Connecting the store lets you see customer flows, analyse customer journeys and measure the physical shopping experience. What’s more, it gives you the right capabilities for an effective omnichannel approach.

What it means for retailers – and customers

In the data-driven store, everything that can be measured is measured, and the data drives strategy, service improvements and value for customers. Coordinating data throughout the operation brings strong competitive advantages. And when you add technologies like data analytics, AI, machine learning, IoT and cloud into the mix, you have great opportunities to understand customers at a deeper level.


Reimagining the Store

Trend Report: the role of the physical store in an omnichannel age

Reimagining the Store


Retailers need to know their customers – who they are, what they like, how they move. Advances in network technology make it easier to understand the important patterns.

Through data analysis, you can get a deep understanding of how customers move around the store, giving insights into layout, the attractiveness of different sections and queueing times.

There’s also a lot to learn from how customers move outside the store. Crowd data is a powerful tool that shows patterns in the surrounding area. It reveals trends such as when many people will be nearby, and when most customers choose to enter a store. That makes it possible to adjust opening hours, evaluate messaging and much more. Learn more about Telia Crowd Insights

Where do we buy?

85% prefer to buy food and groceries in a physical store

85% prefer to buy food and groceries in a physical store

33% of people aged 35-44 prefer to buy electronics online, whereas 29% favour a physical store

33% of people aged 35-44 prefer to buy electronics online, whereas 29% favour a physical store

29% of people aged 16-24 prefer to buy clothes online

29% of people aged 16-24 prefer to buy clothes online

63% prefer to buy home furnishings in a physical store

63% prefer to buy home furnishings in a physical store



Consumers don’t really want to choose between online and physical shopping – they want the best of both worlds. 

And that’s what omnichannel retail is all about. It means creating a connected experience where all channels – online and physical – are completely merged. 

It all comes down to following what the customer wants to do. Perhaps they want to check out products in an app, discuss by phone and collect in a physical store. Or save a shopping cart across different devices. Or even share a store’s music playlist.

Connectivity and data are at the heart of the omnichannel approach – knowledge gained in one channel should be instantly available to all the others, so customer interactions can be continued smoothly and naturally from the store to online, apps and social media. 

Delivering the goods

It shouldn’t be surprising that great customer service is a foundation. Get it right, and you will come much closer to customers and eliminate their frustrations. 

Intelligent customer service platforms make it possible to quickly steer the customer to an answer, or to a person with the right knowledge, no matter whether the conversation was started via phone, email or social media. And a good system ensures that any staff member the customer comes into contact with knows the errand and has all the relevant details to hand. Learn about the Telia Ace customer service platform


Local portal

A delivery point close to home. Similar to today's drop-off points, but with a greater focus on service.

Fulfilment centre

A store that saves on the bells and whistles of traditional stores, such as staff and furnishings. An example is the warehouse shop.


A digitalised physical store, with an experience built around innovations such as virtual changing rooms and smart connections to mobile devices.

Digital pop-up

A temporary trading location that uses technology to a high degree, for example showcasing products physically while connecting to a wider range online.

Inspiration store

Reinforces the physical store benefits that online shopping can’t match, for example through services and inspiration beyond the products on offer. Digital tools can provide inspiration, and the final purchase can be offline or online.

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