Can you believe 2017 is almost over? Neither can we. But as it winds down, we’re reflecting on some of ClickZ‘s top articles from the past year. For the rest of the week, we’re going to share our most popular posts, the top-read from each month.
July: The battle for retail (or why Amazon acquired Whole Foods)
Earlier this year, Amazon made its most expensive acquisition yet: Whole Foods Market for a staggering $13.7 billion. That further cemented the company’s rivalry with Walmart, which has experienced a digital renaissance after years of losing business to Amazon.
The two retailers are both working hard to master blending the on- and offline experience. The Whole Foods acquisition played heavily into that, according to former ClickZ writer Chris Camps, outlining this evolution and even begrudgingly using the word “phygital.”
August: Three emerging payment technologies retailers need to know about
As consumers’ purchasing habits evolve, so does the way they pay for those purchases. Contributor Al Roberts listed some of the biggest emerging technologies retailers can’t ignore.
Mobile wallets, which Visa expects to be the standard by 2020, are arguably having the biggest impact of the three, thanks to particularly widespread offerings from Apple and Google. But retailers still must pay attention to biometrics and cryptocurrencies. Companies like Expedia and Overstock.com are already accepting Bitcoin payments, which are cheaper to process than credit card transactions.
September: How is AR revolutionizing the in-store experience for retailers?
Keeping with the “phygital” theme (sorry, Chris) is augmented reality, which allows retailers to add virtual elements to the physical world. Though its adoption isn’t widespread, brands seem more willing to invest in the technology than VR. Zion Market Research even projects the AR market will reach $133 billion in the next three years.
Contributing writer Terza Litsa discussed some of the best uses for AR in retail. For example, Uniqlo created a more engaging shopping experience by incorporating AR into fitting rooms so consumers can visualize themselves in different colors of a particular item.