Beauty is likely the most personal category of all of retail. It's also a category where there is an enormous amount of competition between brands, channels and retailers. The amount of potential alternative products accompanied by the vast number of choices for the consumer as a shopping destination for beauty products leaves the consumer overwhelmed and sometimes frustrated.
As a result, success in beauty is no longer defined by the products themselves. A high-quality product offering is an expectation, not the exception. Rather than the products themselves, succeeding in beauty is being increasingly defined by the ability of the brand or retailer to provide a meaningful experience to consumers. An experience that engages, evokes emotion and drives the consumer closer to the brand. An experience that builds a connection between the consumer and the brand.
In building a meaningful experience for consumers, you as a brand or retailer need to consider a combination of both physical as well as digital elements. By combining both physical and digital worlds, you're able to create an experience that connects with consumers on multiple levels. An experience that one one hand provides the beauty customer with a confident, pleasing as well as appealing environment in which to shop and on the other hand engages the consumer on a personal level with the help of digital solutions.
Consider a beauty customer-experience where the consumer walks into a store, is able to receive a personal beauty consultation by taking their selfie on a digital in-store screen, input their loyalty account number, move away from the screen towards the aisles where their favourite beauty products are displayed in an aesthetically pleasing way, open up the mobile application of the brand or retail chain, see the results of their personal beauty consultation on their mobile, view a curated list of products just for them, have the opportunity to try those products on virtually and ultimately grab those products from the shelf in order to purchase them in-store. All this within a matter of minutes.
That's what an engaging customer-experience in beauty retail could look like.