Danny Howe & Lee Hart of Stored on Growing Popularity of Phydigital Experience

Danny Howe & Lee Hart of Stored on Growing Popularity of Phydigital Experience

Interview by Maja SkokleskaMaja Skokleska
Published: January 23, 2023

Despite the rise of digital channels and online shopping, research suggests that many consumers prefer phydigital experiences that combine digital and physical best practices and strategies.

While 60% of shoppers have webroomed and 51% of them have showroomed, 49% think integrating in-store, online, and mobile shopping channels is the best way to enhance the shopping and brand experience.

To learn more about this growing trend and how it benefits shoppers, we talked to Stored Co-Founders Danny Howe and Lee Hart.

They also discussed how this model could be a game changer for retailers and shared some tips on how they can take advantage of it.

Spotlight: “Phygital experience” is one of the latest growing trends in marketing. Can you enlighten us on how this approach works?

Danny Howe & Lee Hart: We would argue that phygital isn’t a trend, but more an evolution of shopping. It’s the frictionless integration of physical and digital shopping channels. Phygital uses technology to create an efficient customer experience, wherever and however they choose to shop.

Stored logo
[Source: Stored]


What value does phygital experience bring to customers and how does it contribute to a smooth omnichannel experience?

A truly connected phygital experience allows a customer to move, without friction, from one channel to another. So whether a customer starts a journey in-store but wants to buy the product online, or they identify the product online but want to complete the purchase in-store, phygital retailers put connectivity of those experiences at the forefront.

Customers often move into and out of online and offline experiences within one single journey. In doing so, they capture product ideas in a disparate form to continue those journeys later via an alternative channel. Today they are taking screenshots, keeping open tabs, saving products in retailer baskets and taking photos in-store. Consumers are effectively saving products they’re considering in wishlists across a myriad of locations.

With Stored, everything can be saved in one place. Stored makes shopping so much more organized and stress-free. Stored also notifies the customer of price drops and promotions, so they always get the best price. Ultimately, Stored will save customers time, money and sanity.

With customers usually making either a physical or digital purchasing choice, how can the phygital model be a game changer for businesses?

Customer journeys are chaotic but retailer channels are fixed. By using a phygital model and connecting physical and digital retail channels, retailers can track their customers across channels.

By moving with the customer, retailers are able to optimize towards conversion and for the first time gain insight and understanding of true channel apportionment and the value of an assisted conversion from one channel to another.

Stored is a digital shopping basket that helps connect physical and digital retail while offering a true omni-commerce experience. What was the inspiration behind the app and how does it differ from other similar tools?

Through our previous roles, we have witnessed first-hand the difficulties and pain points retailers experience because of the disconnected nature of multichannel retail. To date technology has not enabled them to connect physical and digital retail to give a true, accurate picture of their customers and how they shop. This means missed opportunity and missed revenue.

Stored is different from other basket tools in that it will work across both physical and digital retail.

Why should consumers download Stored?

We conducted a survey last year and found that 98% of the 1,200 respondents mentioned they saved product ideas in one or more ways across multiple channels. While 56% started a product search via one channel but completed the purchase via another.

Stored eradicates the need to save product ideas in multiple places. It eradicates camera rolls filled with screenshots, multiple saved baskets and wish lists saved in notes folders. Anything and everything customers are thinking of buying can be saved in one place with Stored. It’s a shopping basket they can take anywhere. Not only that, they can share wish lists with friends and family and be notified of price drops and promotions, meaning they are also buying at the best price.

How about retailers—how can the app help businesses that sell physically increase conversions?

We're increasingly seeing customers begin mobile journeys while in physical stores, as consumers look to bring the benefits of digital into their physical shopping experience.

To meet consumers’ expectations of a phygital experience, there are big barriers to entry for most retailers. It’s incredibly expensive to develop your own app and even more so to drive adoption and maintain it. We can deliver this experience on behalf of the retailers and provide this to them for little cost but a huge benefit.

Through partnering with Stored, the retailer can track the consumer in their purchase journey across channels, and communicate with them along the way. The retailer can capture the intent and interest of the consumer when the time to buy isn’t now, connect with them instantly, and nudge them towards conversion. By connecting in-store to online bricks and mortar, retailers are able to own and see the journey their consumers take and ultimately influence the outcome.

How does Stored challenge platforms such as Pinterest, Instagram and Amazon where consumers can save favorite items and also make purchases?

Stored works across any website. Consumers currently have items saved in baskets across multiple sites, saved lists on Instagram or Pinterest or both, wish lists on Amazon, and a camera roll of dozens of screenshots and photos taken in-store.

All of the above can be saved in Stored. Stored is ONE place for everything you are considering buying, no matter in which store it is sold, online or offline.

For businesses who are new to this trend, please share some tips on how they can create and take advantage of a phygital experience.

Phygital is a connection between channels. Retailers should consider methods to seamlessly connect customers coming into their physical store to their online store. This will undoubtedly involve some form of investment in technology, but it needn’t be as expensive as one might think, particularly if partnering with a solution like Stored as opposed to developing an app, which is unlikely to be adopted anyway.

Retailers need to think about the customers who are interested in the products they are selling but, for whatever reason, the time to buy isn’t now, or they may simply need more information than they can find for themselves in-store. How are they going to continue to communicate with that customer after they have left the store, whether online or offline, about that product? How will they nudge them towards conversion at a later date?

We’d love to help create phygital experiences throughout the high street and we’re currently recruiting retailers to join our pilot program, free of charge to show them how to unlock the savings for the later economy, increase conversions and deliver experiences aligned to how their customers really shop.

Thank you for your time, Danny Howe and Lee Hart. Best of luck to the both of you and Stored!

Keep up with Stored on LinkedIn and read about other successful businesses here.

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