Shoppers see wearables as the future of retail

Wearable technology will become an integral part of retail in the next two to five years, and if that is to happen, security must be everyone’s number one priority.

That is the result of a survey conducted by Vista Retail Support.

According to the survey, almost three quarters of shoppers (72 per cent) believe wearable tech is the future of retail. They believe it will revolutionise the way we pay for things, how we access product information, receive offers and navigate around stores.

Half of those questioned (51 per cent) believe wearables for retail will be a common thing in two to five years.

While the vast majority of shoppers (82 per cent) view speed at the checkout as the main advantage of using wearable technology, nearly half (49 per cent) say it will improve their experience by allowing them to receive personalised offers when they are shopping.

“Wearable technology, such as the smartwatch, is going to change our in-store experience significantly,” said James Pepper, technical director, Vista Retail Support. “The results show us that faster payments and product information sent directly to a piece of wearable technology, are the future of retail.

“This survey demonstrates that this is how shoppers expect the in-store experience to develop and retailers need to prepare for it. They must have the right infrastructure in their stores so shoppers can use their wearable devices easily and securely.”

Still, security has to be everyone’s number one priority. Nearly two-thirds (63 per cent) of shoppers say security fears might deter them from using wearable technology and 52 per cent say they will be discouraged if only a few shops allow them to use it.

User-friendliness is not an issue, though. Only 11 per cent are worried wearables might be too complicated for use.