A single store might need someone who specializes in mobile development, another who specializes in supply chain implementation, and another who focuses on analytics or on a real-time data and memory platform. A manager coordinates these efforts so they can actually produce useful results and coordinate actual programs and strategies with a high ROI.
Selling products online and making them available in-store for pickup has made the buying process easier for customers – and it also can save valuable space and resources for the retailer. And the use of beacon technology, such as Samsung’s newly introduced Proximitys
, enables retailers to reach customers like never before. Beacon technology is a location-based service that allows retailers to provide in-store offers to consumers and can even provide customers with floor plans of a mall. For customers, it’s convenient and appealing, and for retailers it provides a streamlined way to create and manage marketing campaigns.
Another key use of technology that every retailer should consider is making product information and branding available in-store. This may mean using video screens to display product detail, but there are other options. Providing free Wi-Fi is a simple, affordable and extremely powerful one. Shoppers with smart phones and tablets can simply connect to Wi-Fi and research products, or even find sales tailored to their personal interests and purchase history.
Some stores – like Smith’s Abt – equip their staff with tablets or smartphones so that they’re ready to answer any customer question with the click of a button.
Ben Davis is an IT consultant with the British firm Econsultancy, which specializes in using technology to bring together online and offline retail strategies. He notes that while many retailers overemphasize integrating social media into the store environment, mobile technology can be extremely powerful. Giving price comparisons, sales alerts and product information, can guide customers through the purchase process. It can also help develop strong customer-retailer relationships while providing retailers with valuable data and analytics.
All of these projects require teams of people with different specialties – mobile technology, programming, analytics – to succeed. Retail managers’ coordination efforts make this possible. These can facilitate every step of the selling process – from stocking stores to attracting customers and driving sales.
“Multichannel customers are worth more than offline or online only ones,” says Davis. “It pays to implement tech that allows operational improvement – not just a flashy experience for the customer.” Sarah Tanksalvala is a Colorado-based freelance writer specializing in technology, marketing, energy and lifestyle topics.Source : Forbes Samsung BusinessVoice