Then, Now, Next: Service

Charlotte Hurd


Over the last year, consumer routines have changed and the huge adoption of both e-commerce and m-commerce has left brands and retailers questioning the right ways and the best places to serve their customers.
Despite the impact of Covid-19, the retail cogs are back in motion. We track the expectations for service and the key strategic themes to be aware of moving forwards.


Previously, when it came to service, customers were expecting one thing – that the process would be easy and automated.  

However, the introduction of AR shifted expectations and provided a wider opportunity for brands. 

Millions of people were having compelling, immersive experiences of mixed reality on their smartphones, which widened the expectation for magical, gripping m-commerce experiences. 

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The customer service landscape is evolving at great speed, catalysed by the Covid-19 pandemic, consumers now expect service in-store, at home, online and even in virtual environments.  

Fast, flexible and controlled fulfillment will be key for new retail experience as we emerge from a time in which ecommerce was adopted in huge numbers.  

As high street retailers begin to redefine how their store experience works post-covid, tools to help clientele will be key to help give customers 360-degree service, including appointment booking, live chat and virtual assistants.  

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Bringing these services directly into the consumers homes will be one way to increase revenue and add value to the service experience in future.  

Look to new brand Adla for inspiration…catering exclusively to students, Adlais a new UK-based, US-operating service that drops off clothing (curated to suit individuals’ tastes via on-campus and online questionnaires) from brands including Nike and Zara at students’ dorm rooms. Students have two days to try clothes before returning unwanted items – via dorm-room pick-up – and paying for kept products.  

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