All is Not Lost for Brick and Mortar in the Digital Age of Shopping

A couple of years ago, I ventured out on Black Friday to find uncrowded stores, likely due to technology and the shift in the way consumers buy products. And last year on Thanksgiving night, I decided to switch it up a bit and opted to shop online. This year, I convinced my husband to head out with me, because experiencing the madness of long-lines, or lack thereof, can be boring when you’re alone.

For our adventure, we attempted to use technology to our advantage. We reserved a popular dollhouse a few days in advance, thinking that we wouldn’t have to wait in a long line. The dollhouse is allegedly on most holiday lists this year, so by booking it early we would walk right up to the online pickup area and retrieve the product. However, a few hours before we left, I received an email saying the order could no longer be fulfilled. Needless to say, we decided we should still give it a shot, and maybe, just maybe, they would have some of what we wanted in stock.

When we arrived, we walked through the store and lo and behold, there it was — 4 dollhouses — exactly like the one we wanted to purchase, stacked up in the center of the store. I thought to myself, was the inability to fulfill our order a ploy to get more people to the store? If it was, it worked on us! We ended up buying other things we definitely didn’t need, and waited in a line that was nearly the length of the building (not kidding).

Over that weekend, I attempted to reserve something else online, from a different store. The next day, I received a note saying the order was being cancelled due to it no longer being in stock. I couldn’t believe it. I ended up getting in my car, driving to the store, and once again, found what I needed — and this time, it was the only one left (not kidding).

Two different stores, two different coincidences? I think not. But it is interesting, whether the retailers meant for this to happen or not, that the notifications got me back into their stores.

Heading out to the shops this holiday season may sometimes be the best option, though I’m sure there will be stints when I make purchases from the comforts of my home. With the digital age and holidays upon us, it’s clear that all is not lost for brick and mortar.

Related Stories

Looking Back on One Year: An Interview with Mike Abbott, Thomson Reuters

Posted on 12.1.2022 by in Client Interviews, Customer Advisory Boards, Featured

Mike Abbott is the Head of Market Insights, Global Thought Leadership and the Thomson Reuters Institute, which brings together people from across the legal, corporate, tax and accounting, and government communities to ignite conversation and debate. Mike and the Thomson  

Continue Reading »

Do You Really Want to Launch a Client Advisory Board?

Posted on 10.3.2022 by in Customer Advisory Boards, Featured

Client Advisory Councils can be incredibly powerful vehicles to gain real insight, embed clients in your strategy and deepen important relationships. But, if it is not the right time, and the foundation is not in place, you can lose ground  

Continue Reading »

Stop Admiring the Problem…Get Thee to a Customer Advisory Board Meeting!

Posted on 02.11.2022 by in Customer Advisory Boards

I know brainstorm sessions can prove to be extremely valuable. Why? Because we hear it often in our work at Farland Group — whether in a customer advisory board meeting, or in a working group session in between board meetings.  

Continue Reading »


Customer Advisory Boards

Customer Advisory Boards are powerful engines of engagement, insight, and business transformation. Make the most of yours.

Meeting Facilitation: Virtual and In-Person Boards » Taking Your Customer Advisory Board Meetings Virtual »

Learn More »

Engagement Strategy

Like any good relationship, customer engagement is a long-term, reciprocal effort. When done well, meaningful engagement leads to better business results, faster.

Engage Your Customers to Help You Stop Pitching » Getting to a Customer Engagement Mindset »

Learn More »

Understanding the C-Suite

Building C-level programs that are meaningful and bring value to you as well as to your c-suite customers is challenging. Veiled sales pitches won’t win the day with this audience. Deliver what executives want: ideas, inspiration, innovation, influence.

Building a C-Suite Client Experience Strategy » Do you Know What Your Customers Value? »

Learn More »