Henceforth, the customer experience in physical stores depends on the use of technology. In the store of the future, the consumer will not just come to make a purchase but to enjoy an experience. The store of tomorrow will therefore have to integrate technologies which offer increasingly immersive and personalised experiences, to cater for demanding, ultra-connected customers.
The connected store (physical and digital synergy)
The retail sector is using technology to propel the customer experience to the next level: the term phygital commerce or even omnibusiness, which makes the connection between the physical and virtual spheres. The principle? Use consumer data for the purpose of enriching their experience and meeting the needs of customers who want more proximity, personalisation and flexibility. Thus, the stores of the future are increasingly connected thanks to new technologies:
- Augmented reality: to try on garments in virtual changing booths;
- RFID chips: radio-identification chips built into the labels of items detected when reaching the check-out, so emptying your basket is no longer necessary. In this way, long check-out queues will be a thing of the past. The consumer can then make contactless payment. They can also be used to identify the products looked at in the aisles by shoppers, to offer them a wish-list;
- Digital mirrors: to take photos and share them on social media, obtain information about products, view the wish-list created by the RFID chips and project items in different sizes and colours;
- Drones: for delivery in record time wherever the consumer wants it.
- The virtual wallet: reduction vouchers will be made electronic and purchases recorded in the virtual portfolio:
- Beacons: little Bluetooth sensors which send various kinds of content (push notifications, messages, targeted offers, etc.) to the smartphones of shoppers who enter the store;
- Facial recognition: robots welcome customers and produce a record of their journey to offer them services and personalised offers and to direct them to products that may interest them;
- Connected screens: to order items in one click, view catalogues and create a connection with the store’s online version.
Focus on the customer experience in a store of the future
The retail sector now realises that to attract customers it has to create spaces which enhance their experience. Because to make a consumer want to make purchases, they have to be in a place that they find welcoming, in which they are comfortable and know they are being listened to. Overview of the concepts which will build the store of the future.
An omnichannel solution is THE solution for offering an original and bespoke solution to your customers. This marketing approach relies on an ultra-personalisation of the customer journey: the customer and their expectations must be fulfilled. In the store of the future, a camera can detect a visitor as soon as they enter the store and thanks to artificial intelligence, they can immediately analyse and create a record of their interactions, behaviours and movements. Thus, the sales staff will have relevant data they can use to play their role as advisers. The stored data will highlight the most attractive shelves, in front of which consumers linger, or on the contrary those which do not manage to capture their attention and maintain it.
Omnichannel commerce makes the boundaries between physical stores and their web storefronts less defined, through the multiplication of contact points with the customer. The advantage for the retail sector? The ability to generate highly qualified in-store footfall thanks to digital technology. This new shopping experience means the consumer is free to choose the channel (social media, website or physical outlet) to enter into contact with the brand. In-store and sales outlet digital signage presents itself as an ideal solution to strengthen their omnichannel strategy. Digitisation of sales outlets involves placing screens so that shoppers can view a catalogue, place an order, obtain more information or return an item. The Cenareo management system dedicated to digital signage allows a fleet of screens to be managed easily offering relevant and attractive content. As well as encouraging interaction, it is a significant tool for deploying a powerful omnichannel communication strategy.
Collection and processing of data
If these technologies promise original experiences to shoppers in the store of the future, they would amount to nothing without data. As personalisation necessarily involves collecting and analysing behaviour to be able to offer targeted and relevant services. These data will enable retailers to be aware of a customer’s purchase history to provide them with tailored and informed assistance. They will be able to assess their favourite colours, the size of their garments, previous purchase items and a host of details which will allow them to provide better advice and more quickly. Because it has been proved that if a consumer is guided towards products that they like, they will spend less time in the store and will not have a feeling of having wasted their time or of irritation.
The advent of connected stores poses questions about the relevance of a human presence in sales outlets. Many stores in France are restricted by laws which forbid opening after 13:00 on Sundays. The demand of consumers to be able to obtain what they want at any time therefore poses the question of cost-effectiveness and abolition of this law. Experiments have proved that stores open on Sundays have experienced an increase in footfall and their sales. In reality, the use of automatic check-outs to replace staff could allow stores of the future to extend their opening hours to the night and Sunday afternoons. Moreover, stores will perhaps no longer need their employees’ services during these times, but staff will still be needed to welcome customers, monitor the store, look after the shelves and keep the store clean and tidy.
Offer an original immersive experience to your customers thanks to digital signage. Cenareo supports you in deploying your omnichannel strategy of digitisation of sales outlets, through its system dedicated to digital signage. Generate qualified footfall and offer an original experience by creating and broadcasting relevant content to your fleet of screens, instantaneously. Cenareo responds to tomorrow’s trends in the store of the future, for a unique experience and bespoke communication.