The Importance of Retail Visual Content Should Not Be Underestimated.


Image drives retail, and celebrity-endorsed products raise the bar. Before Facebook, our mailboxes runneth over with glossy catalogs to buy in-store or to drive us to to buy online direct to the retailer. And during the holiday season, you could count on triple the volume of print advertising to hit your mailbox.

Today, all that has changed. We’re in the digital age and platforms are driving the spend. Catalogues sent by postal mail are likely deposited in the recycling bin without a glance. Retailers are spending a premium to craft the visual experience instead and not taking a chance so much on the lure of print. Here are some takeaways to consider.

Is the engagement rate of retail social commerce significantly increasing sales? Or little result for a lot of effort? Not so for Amazon. Case in point: “Merch By Amazon.” Simply upload your artwork, choose a t-shirt type and color, set your price and add a product description. Amazon will create a product page on and when customers buy your shirt, Amazon handles production, shipping and customer service — all with no upfront costs. It’s all about personal engagement with personal results.

GenZ is the new shopper, sending mobile shopping into overdrive. The youngest are tweens with significant influence on household buying decisions. Everywhere they go, they go mobile. The older Z’s, now out of school, are armed with credit cards. The estimate is that they take in 60 percent more content on average than older shoppers, but retailers have less than seconds to catch their attention.

Amazon is crushing it. Brands prefer to build a strong brand experience through their own sites to convey the the brand DNA. The Amazon experience is about convenience, not the emotional connection. And the younger shopper is looking for brands on the cheap. Brands asking how they can deliver content the way Amazon does should consider this model.

The AI Factor. It is suggested that by 2025, the artificial intelligence (AI) market will surpass $100 billion. AI drives all kinds of personalization efforts, from customized email blasts and landing pages to tailored apps and the shopper experience. As brands strive to provide ever more individualized experiences to cut through the noise of so much content and competition, AI will be there. And these days, a brand’s success depends on high-level data analysis that goes far beyond human ability.

Human creativity paired with the power of AI will revolutionize potential when it comes to everything from understanding users and data to scaling content and engagement rates. And many retailers have taken notice – most of all Amazon. For the consumer, AI-powered visual search can scan and locate thousands of images to find their desired product.

Today’s retail is about the user being able to quickly find and purchase product and the retailer being able to quickly process online purchases for a profit. Because Amazon is so well known, only the rare visitor wouldn’t know that both of those things — i.e., product search and online shopping — are available.