How can smart technology improve retail design?

By 30th November 2020January 13th, 2021Uncategorised

The funny thing about businesses is that while we all strive to maintain the same ethos and values; we recognise that in order to succeed there will be times when we will need to evolve. That we will have to give ourselves a facelift because what works now, won’t necessarily work in the future.

And this expectation is the same for all businesses. From redesigning your store front to rebranding your entire image, it will eventually happen.

So what can you do? How can you effectively improve your retail design without having to start again from scratch?

Simple… smart technology.

These simple tools are renowned for improving shopping experiences and giving customers maximum enjoyment and satisfaction. Plus, they are incredibly cost-effective when done right.

Let us explain…

Digital Signage 

📄
📃
🔗
💌
1️⃣

The problem with regular signage is that if you ever want to change it, not only do you need to pay a signage company to replace it; you’ve then got to wait for it to be created.

Digital signage eliminates this issue, as it can easily be amended at different times of the day to reflect customer behaviour, stock levels and external factors e.g. the weather, and ensure that you promote the most relevant products/offers at the right times.

There is no need to wait. Instead, anyone from your team can modify the digital sign and launch it straight away.

And this can be extremely cost effective and better for the environment – over the long term – as there is no wastage or need to dispose of old signs.

Floor sensors

These have the amazing knack of being able to gather data on how users move around the store, enabling you to strategically create displays and place products where they will receive the most traffic. Not only will this help to maximise customer engagement with your products; it will also boost sales.

But this is not the only benefit you’ll receive by using this piece of smart technology…

Floor sensors can also:

  • Provide you with a more advanced people counting system that is highly accurate and unobtrusive. This is achieved through the installation of 1/8 inch thick mats under the carpets of your entries/areas of engagement/entire space. Once in place, you can effectively capture customer movements using analytics; track your traffic, and use the data and reports produced to improve the utilisation of your physical space i.e. you’ll be able to monitor customer journeys and determine which areas of your retail store customers linger/return to/visit most/ walkthrough.
  • Offer you enhanced analytical capabilities, including being able to: analyse data, discover trends, and continuously monitor and improve the activation within your space.
  • Help you to identify when people linger or return to specific areas of your store. This is useful, as it suggests that the customer may need help and would benefit from the assistance of a store assistant. Knowing this, you can send a member of your team to this area, before the customer has to ask for help.

Apps, beacons & notifications  

FACT: Most in-store shoppers (69%) would rather read a product review on their phone than ask for help/a recommendation from a store assistant.

What both of these facts prove is a need to make your products accessible online. Be that a product description, a customer review or an offer; they crave guidance from the digital world and not just from your team.

Fortunately, you can utilise smart technology to provide them with the digital support that they crave. For instance, you can use it to:

  1. Send them offers, discounts and information (through push notifications) whenever they are physically close to your location – beacons (iBeacons, Eddystone, alt beacon, etc.) are designed to communicate deals to customers when they are in close proximity to your store. With the help of these deals, you may be able to encourage them to spontaneously visit your store and make a purchase.
  2. Tailor their offers to match their purchase behaviour and lifestyle – the data you’ve gathered from past searches, purchases and movements through your store can enable you to personalise the deals you send to their phones, emails and related searches.
  3. Streamline their in-store shopping experience by recommending specific products (based on past searches) and by highlighting their location within your store (upon entry into your retail space).
  4. Answer questions about items, stock availability and home deliveries while they are in-store – harnessing chatbots and smart tech, you can provide your customers with instant answers which may help to positively influence their purchasing decisions as they won’t have to wait around to locate your staff to ask. Instead, they can independently get the answers they want and decide if they want to buy your product then and there, or not.
  5. Provide fit information about individual products – using body measurements and past fit information, you can tailor the information you send while eliminating their need to try on clothes in-store or return them. Instead, they can use the information you send to determine whether or not it will fit. And this is incredibly useful in the current climate where customers cannot try on clothes or use changing rooms due to COVID. With smart tech, customers can still buy the clothes they want without having to worry about it fitting badly.
  6. Have items brought to the changing rooms – apps can either be utilised by customers to ask members of your team to bring specific items to the changing rooms i.e. in different sizes/colours, or to other areas of the store where they are browsing.

FACT: 53% of shoppers would rather use their mobile phone to find deals/offers on products they are considering buying than discuss promotions with an assistant physically in the store.

Smart Mirrors and interactive screens

This piece of tech is great for retail stores as it allows you to offer customers a personalised shopping experience where they can find the best products quickly and efficiently.

Adidas’s flagship store in London for example contains virtual mirrors in their changing rooms that allow customers to order different sizes and colours without them having to leave. Instead, they can use this interactive touch screen to make requests and get members of your staff to fetch them on their behalf.

Another perk of using smart mirrors is being able to show customers other products they may be interested in – based on what they are trying on or what others have brought. Similarly, these mirrors can be used to virtually dress yourself, which is ideal given the restrictions Covid has placed on trying on clothes.

Smart shelves

These are incredibly popular in the USA right now, but have the potential to cross the seas. They work by placing digital prices tags across the entire store which get automatically updated whenever there is a price change. Not only is this better for the environment – as it eliminates the need for paper tags – it also prevents pricing errors that can occur when a display hasn’t been updated, resulting in customers asking for the cheaper price.

You can also utilise RFID tags to digitally monitor when stock is getting low or has been placed in the wrong location; enabling you to keep your shelves fully stocked and accessible, as customers won’t have to search around for what they want.

 

See what we mean? IoT/smart technology has the power to solve customer problems, eliminate future issues and supplement customer cravings. More importantly, smart tech can help customers to stay connected to your store by ensuring that they benefit from a smoother, more relaxing shopping experience.

At Resolution Interiors we can provide you with the guidance, support and instruction you need to pick the right smart tech for your business. By assessing customer behaviour, data and your business requirements; we can tailor your retail design to maximise customer experience and increase sales. To learn more about how we can incorporate smart tech into your store fit-out, contact us today.