Smart Cities are more attractive

Bitkom: Smart Cities are more attractive

The digitization of cities and communes increases the attractiveness of shopping locally and also makes them more attractive overall, as a survey by the industry association Bitkom shows.

Until well into the 1990s, people still had to stand in line to get a monthly public transit pass, but then sales shifted more and more to cigarette and magazine stores. Today, you don’t even have to leave your house to buy a ticket, because you can get your monthly ticket or a ticket for a single trip conveniently on your smartphone via an app. There are now a large number of apps that make it easier to find your way around smart cities and get from point A to point B.

Meanwhile, 6 out of 10 Internet users would like to see as many offers and services in their smart city as possible bundled in a single app. Three quarters (76) percent of younger people aged 16 and 29 said they would use such a central city center app for retail, restaurants, public transport and the like. Among older people aged 65 and up, the proportion is naturally lower, but at 53 percent it is higher than many would expect.

Crisis saver Click & Collect is high on the agenda

For 72 percent of the more than 1,000 Internet users (16+) surveyed by Bitkom Research in October 2021, public Wi-Fi is a key factor in making city centers more attractive.  69 percent would like to receive real-time information on their cell phones about which products are available where and at what price, and almost as many (68 percent) would also like to receive local price comparisons on their smartphones.

Smart Cities MyBusinessFuture
Source: Adobe Stock / jamesteohart

Almost two-thirds, or 63 percent, of those surveyed would use the “Click & Collect” option to place online orders and receive the desired goods in person at their local store. During the Corona crisis, this was the only chance for many stores and restaurants to still make sales, and Click & Collect has also increasingly taken hold in Germany. Half of the 1,109 respondents (51 percent) would welcome information on current occupancy rates in city centers on their smartphones.

Easier to find your way in and through the Smart City

Digital support for commuter and inner-city traffic is also in high demand in smart cities. 62 percent of the survey participants are in favor of a parking app to make it easier to find parking spaces and buy parking tickets. 44 percent of respondents would use mobility services such as shuttle services or cargo bikes, and 41 percent would like to see (more) public fast-charging stations for e-cars.

Information about special offers is on the wish list of 59 percent of German Internet users, and around half (49 percent) would like to receive online advice from local retailers in smart cities. For Bitkom CEO Dr. Bernhard Rohleder, this is a clear sign of how the omnichannel concept is successfully dovetailing brick-and-mortar and online retail.

In fact, 63 percent of those surveyed by Bitkom believe that retailers could make local shopping more exciting and convenient through digital technologies.

Source Cover Image: Adobe Stock / pixel-shot