Until recently, many e-commerce sites lacked the personal experience a consumer gets when they walk into a brick and mortar store. But, we’ve seen a shift happening within e-commerce where many retailers are offering services traditionally found within physical stores on their digital counterparts. With the busy holiday shopping season kicking off, there is no better time to take a look at some of the new ways online retailers are enriching the digital shopping experience. The Friendly Sales Associate

Walk into most stores these days and you’re instantly greeted by a friendly sales associate willing to help you find exactly what you’re looking for. In the online world, retailers are using live video assistance to emulate this experience. Now, consumers have the opportunity to speak face-to-face with a sales associate that can help them with their online or mobile purchase. These live video sessions include co-browsing the online store with the shopper, showing them items that might be of interest, and even helping them through the checkout process.

The Personal Stylist

Think you need to be rich to afford a personal stylist? Think again. E-commerce startups like Stitch Fix and Trunk Club offer consumers an easy way to get personal recommendations online through style quizzes that give retailers a sense of each shopper’s tastes and interests. Personalized apparel and accessories are sent to shoppers on a monthly basis to try and – if they like — buy!

The Demo Station

Today’s retailers know that video sells. Whether it’s a model walking down a runway to show how a dress fits and flows, or a demonstration of new kitchen gadget, video promotion is six times more effective than its written counterparts (source: REELSEO). So much can be conveyed about products through short, high-quality videos – just as they are in-store at demo stations.

The Dressing Room

One of the biggest reasons shoppers still prefer to buy in the store – especially within the apparel industry – is the ability to try items on before purchasing. Enter the virtual dressing room, where shoppers can “try on” clothing, accessories and even cosmetics from the comfort of their own home. By using Kinect technology, shoppers can simply stand in front of a computer screen that acts as a mirror of sorts, allowing the shopper to see what they would look like in different articles of clothing. The technology even allows for the shopper to split the screen in two for side-by-side comparisons in different outfits.

When shoppers feel immersed and engaged with a brand, they’ll be a much more loyal customer. In the “offline” world, retailers have turned this into an art form, using things like lighting, music and even scents to strength the bond with their customers. This is much more difficult in the online world, but thanks to technology advances and retailers putting them to use in creative ways, we’re starting to see digital stores match the experiences once reserved for in-store shoppers.