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retail technology

The Benefits of Embracing Retail Technologies

By Adam Sanders

A merchant’s success used to be based on a fairly simple formula: offer goods and services that consumers need in a convenient location at a competitive price. Today’s retail environment is much more complex, driven in large part by the digital technologies that give consumers more information and more options. Retailers that embrace these technologies to meet their customers’ rising expectations are more likely to succeed in today’s competitive marketplace.

Let’s take a look at four factors driving the expectations of modern day shoppers.

  1. Mobile technology. 56 percent of shoppers expect sales associates to use mobile technology on the sales floor.(1) Mobile or tablet based POS systems give merchants another way to engage their customers by expanding the point of purchase, allowing customers to get product information and pay for their purchases away from the checkout counter.
     
  2. Inventory information. Sometimes customers look for items in a store that they originally found online, and four out of five shoppers expect sales associates to know inventory information.1 Point of sale technology with inventory tracking capabilities can help merchants with a brick-and-mortar and online presence get the answer to this question quickly and easily.
     
  3. Online shopping. 79 percent of U.S. consumers spend at least half of their shopping time online.(2) As discussed in a previous blog, consumers don’t have a lot of time for shopping, even though they are spending more money. As visits to brick-and-mortar stores give way to online shopping, merchants without a web presence and ecommerce capabilities may miss out on sales.
     
  4. Personalization across channels. 56 percent of consumers leverage at least two or more channels in a typical buying process.(2) A channel could be a retail store, website, mail order catalog, letter, email or text message. Whether they are shopping online or in store, consumers expect the inventory and offers to be consistent. Merchants should be mindful to deliver a similar shopping experience regardless of whether it’s online or in-store.

Consider how your customers’ expectations have changed over time and how the factors listed above may apply to your business. If you’re not sure which technologies make the most sense for you, ask your point of sale reseller.

1 Loyalty360™, http://loyalty360.org/resources/article/are-store-associates-equipped-to-deliver-memorable-customer-experiences, 11/20/2014

2 Loyalty360™ http://loyalty360.org/resources/article/marketing-technology-the-right-foundation-helps-businesses-align-with-custo, 10/3/2014


 

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