Innovative Ways Stores Are Using Technology to Strengthen the Customer Experience

Feb 25

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2/25/2014  RssIcon

While the popularity of online shopping continues to grow, many brick and mortar stores are adopting digital technologies in order to enhance their customer experience. By using similar technologies to those that ecommerce businesses use, more traditional retailers are finding ways to keep up with, and even outpace, their online-only counterparts. Here are some innovative ways that stores are using high-tech tools to create an awesome customer experience.

What Happens (or Doesn't Happen) at the Till

For most retailers today, the POS terminal has become much more than a computerized cash register. Each customer transaction gives you the opportunity to collect valuable information and, in the world of data driven marketing, information is key. If you're not collecting information such as emails and home addresses, mobile phone numbers, buying habits, and so on, you're missing out on a huge amount of useful data.

Using Technology to Keep Customers Engaged Beyond the Initial Purchase

Now that you've collected all of this data, the next question is what to do with it. That's where relevant and automated customer messaging comes into play. The great thing about automated messaging is that you can take a completely hands-off approach to marketing, while still providing a personalized experience for each customer. For example, once a customer leaves your store with a product, you can use the email address or mobile phone number you collected via the POS transaction to send an automated message containing usage tips for the product and upsell offers. This is a great way to encourage customer loyalty, and all it requires is plugging in some simple automation commands. Another option would be to send out an automated message containing a coupon for any customers who don't return to your store within three months of their initial purchase. A great tool you can use to create automated customer messaging is Dynamics RMS point-of-sale system. This tool can help you automate everything from inventory movement to customer messaging, all from your POS system.

Using Technology to Determine What Goes on the Shelves and on Display

In addition to helping with marketing, technology can also play a major role in your merchandising strategy. In a 2012 study by retail consulting firm RSR, it was discovered that one third of major retailers in the US found retail forecasting to be "extremely important" to their profit margin. Using a forecasting tool, you can analyze purchase data to predict which products customers will want to buy at a certain time, and stock more of those products in more prominent places in your store. Forecasting tools can also help you save on excess expenses, as they will also show you which items are less important to stock so you don't waste money ordering excess inventory that you don't need.

Today, the retailers that are really getting ahead are those that are using the latest in high-tech tools to their advantage. Using these tools can be good for your business and for your customers. Providing a more personalized shopping experience makes your store more fun for customers to visit and interact with. At the same time, this personalized experience means that customers will stay engaged with your brand and ultimately keep coming back to make more purchases.

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