Transparency At Retail

There is an incredible transparency that technology is driving, and it affects all aspects of consumers’ and retailers’ lives. The internet has spurred a lot of this, and now look at how  Google Glass is getting major businesses to pause for a second and re-examine their openness.

In @Forbes today there was an article on how all major movie theaters will not allow anyone to wear the new Google Glass and wearable intelligent devices, because of the fear of using them as recording devices. See article at It is probably a warranted fear to be honest, but unfortunately there is no stopping the “transparency train”. Smart  watches, smart apparel, smart phones, smaller devices in general, all make this protectiveness a fool’s errand.

It brings to mind a lot of retailers who are highly protective of photographs being taken in store, usually because they are trying to protect some best-in-class “secret” from being widely exposed and copied. We know who these retailers are in the industry, because we have probably all been stopped by one of them during our careers.

The best thing to do as a retailer will be to embrace the technology, like Japanese retailers are with shoppers’ smartphones, and utilize it to make the shopper experience even more sensory. It is like trying to explain to your kids that should be calling versus texting, or for that matter, not revealing TMI on Snapchat. It is not going to work – embrace the technology as a retailer versus try to protect what you think is sacred, because that is the “new school” that is emerging.


Image By Tim.Reckmann (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

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