With online products at discounted prices at your doorstep, what can the retail store do to bring customers to them?
Easy solution would be to provide shoppers with what they want at a time when they want it.
Retail stores suffer losses everyday by the lack of information of the potential customers who have visited their store (unless they have a loyalty card) or have walked past their store. The customer if presented with the required discounts needed by them, they are twice as likely to buy the product. With re-marketing, Amazon does exactly that and numbers prove that it has been right decision!
Enters Geo location mobile technology. Apple’s iBeacon, BaySensors.com, StoreMode mobile technology and their likes are bringing brick and mortar stores to a digital reality. Retail/department stores can use Geo-fencing through which businesses can create a boundary around their premises so that consumers get a message which will make sense to them. It will allow the managers to get the information such as the peak traffic hours, sales personnel in each department at specific time, maximum purchases segment and impact on sales by using geo-targeting.
The customer enters the retail store say, VeroModa and the mobile app will provide them with the details of different section on each floor. When they enter VeroModa T-shirt section, customer gets a notification of the 60% discounts. They are more likely to buy it when they get the notification in real-time. The store representatives can push discount offers to the customer even when they reach home with the details of the purchase that was made by them or they intended to purchase. E.g. the new summer collection in summer.
i-Beacon by Apple is already been used by popular apparel chains such as Lord & Taylor stores in the United States to understand closely the psyche of the customers. This will send a Geo-targeted message, offers and coupons by using Bluetooth Low Energy to shoppers. Additionally, allow customers to view the product description and a 3D display of product when in a particular section. Taking a step forward, the Shelfbucks (using beacon technology) helps the shoppers to compare price real-time in the store which lets the user buy the product at best price. India, as a huge price sensitive market can reap huge benefits.
No doubt, fast forward a few years and it will be a turn-around technology for the industry as a whole. Though this will change the dimensions of customer experience but only if leveraged in the right way by the store managers, it can benefit the store otherwise it will be one more chunk of useless data in a pile of data already available.