3 Reasons Why Blockchain Is THE Next Big Thing in Retail
By now, people are sick of hearing buzzwords like “blockchain”, “cryptocurrency”, “Bitcoin”, yada yada yada. It’s overkill by now, right?
Blockchain technology is THE next big thing in the Retail industry.
Here are 3 reasons why:
1. Transparency Is In
Welcome to the age of smart consumerism. No longer do people just buy and go. Today, they expect to know where the products they purchase come from, especially important in grocery and fashion #retail. Transparency is in and consumers expect the brands they buy to provide it.
2. Social Good
The number of consumers who shop based on social good or positive impact is increasing daily.
People have higher expectations of the products they buy. Was their clothing made in factories with underpaid workers or from child slave labor? Does the company engage in philanthropic causes?
No longer satisfied with “grab and go” shopping, today’s shoppers want more information and they want it NOW. It’s the reason why product reviews have become so important in eCommerce. (Think Yelp)
Blockchain can provide the transparency, social good,
and wealth of information that consumers demand.
Blockchain is a decentralized, public ledger of transactions. Each transaction is recorded via ‘blocks’ which are authorized by a public network. The transactions cannot be altered and are therefore highly secure. Since its inception in 2008, blockchain has become a trusted source of information across many industries.
Since blockchain makes it possible for anyone to identify the origins of a transaction, should a product be recalled – such as food, luxury goods, or baby products – you can find out where the specific product originated.
3 Best Use Cases for Blockchain in Retail
Grocery Retail and Blockchain
Let’s say that you buy a bag of cucumbers from your supermarket. Days later, the grocery chain is notified of a food safety recall. It can take days or weeks to locate the data that pinpoints where the unsafe cucumbers originated. Blockchain allows them to trace exactly which farm the cucumbers came from in minutes.
Sound farfetched? Walmart is already doing it.
Diamonds and Blockchain
Diamond companies like De Beers use blockchain platform Tracr to secure data on diamonds throughout the entire manufacturing process. Getting engaged? How do you know that the gorgeous diamond in your or your fiancée’s engagement ring was sustainably mined? Blockchain gives you that information along with peace of mind.
Counterfeit Goods and Blockchain
Counterfeit products cost the US Retail industry a whopping $600 billion each year, according to a new Intellectual Property Report. Companies like Verado are using next-gen technology to authenticate consumer goods. Blockchain also offers fast and secure traceability and transparency. After all, the OECD estimates that 3.3% of all global trade involves fake goods, so the benefits of verifying authentic goods is pretty clear.
Blockchain technology is still in its infancy. Its many applications are just coming into being now, but for the Retail industry, the future IS now.