From simple written letters to the revolution of the internet, retailers have strived to find new and appealing methods of interacting and communicating with their customer base as well as improve efficiencies for both customer & business. And with the dawn of a new touch screen era at hand, could we see more of our online buying experiences be brought to the retail stores of the future?
As the years go by, the retail buying process continues to be fine tuned and we learn more about what stimulates customers to go from an uninformed prospect to the exchange of money at the till in store. All parts of this process could dramatically change over the years to come thanks to touch screen technology. Let us enter the shop of the future.
Picture walking along a local high street and a product in the shop window catches your attention. Rather than simply looking at the item through the glass, some advertising related to the product in question pops up in the window and transmits the advert to your I-Phone or other web enabled phone via bluetooth.
Alternatively, the shop window will have touch screen technology, so the shopper can find out more about the product, even place an order by logging in – very appealing for shops that can offer 24/7 shopping even when their store is closed.
Entering the store to browse further, the traditional paper catalogues that are scattered around the store are replaced by fully interactive sleek glass touch screen tables and counters that allow you to browse the full product range and pull out all of the products details, zooming into images and even running videos.
Clicking, dragging, and swiping your finger all the way to the perfect product to purchase in no time at all or building a list of products to compare. And if you are stuck for time, transfer the details of the product to your phone to continue your shopping later.
Having this interaction with the customer in store also improves the efficiencies of the business to suggest through the touch screens either alternative products (upsell) or complimentary products (cross sell), offering the customer a better purchasing experience and the business a healthy increase in customer spend.
If you choose to purchase in store, you confirm your purchase at the touch screen counter, while a sales advisor stands ready, waiting to pounce in the event of a problem, much like at the supermarket self service points.
To pay for the item, a sales assistant, who only required minimal training on the easy to use touch screen checkout, accepts your method of payment and passes the product over in no time at all. Exiting the store, the same glass window that had originally invited customers to enter with advertisements is now sending over to the shoppers phone a new promotion of money off vouchers straight to the phone, enticing you to come again.
And to obtain real time feedback of their buying experience, a survey is sent to the users touch screen phone with a personalised incentive based upon the buyers shopping pattern.
The concept of touch screen technology integrated into shop fittings would be a fantastic evolutionary step for retail, however the next big compatibility hurdle to cross is also the most obvious – the customer. In order for the evolutionary step to occur, the customer needs to not only be able to use the technology but also comfortable with using it.
But the greatest progressive stride for the retailer is that the experience that many smarter retailers are able to offer online can start to be offered offline. And for most of us who have been interested in Marketing for too many years to count, the utopia ideal of being able to deal with your customer at consistently every touch point might be conceivable. But it is just science fiction … for now.
Article from articlesbase.com