Consumer Trends in Asia Shaping the Future Today: Part One – ‘Retailarity’

Asia is home to some of the world’s fastest-developing economies. Here, e-commerce and communication set global trends instead of follow them.

Here is the first of a six-part series written by Nicole Fall and Martin Roll for Think with Google.


This trend is called Retailarity, which refers to the point at which retail and machine intelligence merge to turn every environment into a shopping opportunity. Here’s a look at what this new trend means for your business.

Omnichannel is a term that attempts to marry traditional retail channels with an online store sales strategy. But the word fails to fully take into account how the act of shopping has been enhanced by technical advances.


Enter Retailarity, a word meant to describe a shopping experience without limits. Using cutting-edge technology like artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and machine learning, Retailarity can turn any surface, environment, or device into a point of on-demand, customized retail. It takes the convenience of online shopping and combines it with the touch-and-feel experience of an offline store visit.

As we get to a point where everyday machines such as refrigerators and rice cookers could potentially do our shopping for us, the Internet of Things helps enable Retailarity’s momentum. This shift takes consumers away from the flat world of e-commerce into 3D. Real and virtual shopping environments powered by machine learning come together through Retailarity to create an experience that feels as tangible as a walk through a farmer’s market and as efficient as one-click shopping.

See how the trend is developing.



Pat McGrath Labs became the first beauty brand to sell products via Spotify’s Merchbar. The independent cosmetics brand sold an exclusive collection of makeup worn by singer-songwriter (and brand muse) Maggie Lindemann in the Merchbar on her artist page—showing that any online entertainment company is potentially an e-commerce channel capable of Retailarity.


Muji has launched a fully functioning hotel in China that is effectively an interactive showroom for their product and the Muji lifestyle. Every item in the hotel is for sale—blurring the lines between hotel, store, and what constitutes a retail environment.


Through voice-activated speakers like Google Home you can imagine a future that will allow people to ask the Google Assistant to find in-stock products at the closest store. Also, virtual storefronts will revolutionize how people shop online. Being able to visualize owning a product is often the difference between purchasing or discarding the contents of a shopping cart.

A version of this was originally posted on Think With Google. You can download the full Consumer Trends report here.


Nicole Fall & Martin Roll

Nicole Fall & Martin Roll

Nicole Fall is the founder and head of trends at Asian Consumer Intelligence and Martin Roll is an advisor to Fortune 500 companies and Asian firms.

Read More

subscribe & get more brand in your diet


get more brand in your diet

We never share your info,
we only share ours