5 top-notch technologies to help local retail stay ahead of the curve

23/03/2023

WHEN times are tough economically, many local retail’s chiefs choose to cut corners wherever they can by decreasing spending and slowing down recruiting. Yet you need more than belt-tightening to get you far in a recession. Companies that have identified new avenues for expansion tend to do well amid economic upturns.

So, how can you strengthen your position relative to the competition in times of economic uncertainty? Having efficient procedures, regular output and dependable technology are crucial. The fact that 74% of polled businesses found assistance from automating technological solutions during the pandemic proves that business automation can support these efforts. The good news is that 23% of businesses did better than expected in revenue.

Here are five cutting-edge technologies that may improve your company’s processes:

  1. Digital signage

Retail businesses in the modern market are always on the lookout for innovative strategies to attract and retain clients. Digital signage is one technology quickly gaining prominence since it employs digital displays to convey information and message to clients.

A major advantage of digital signage is that it can provide consumers with all the information they need to make educated purchases. Digital displays may communicate various messages, including product details, prices, business hours, directions, and special offers.

Enhancing customer experience, boosting communication and engagement, and giving you a potent weapon to stand out in a competitive marketplace are at the heart of digital signage’s rising significance. Over half of the consumers say digital displays have influenced their purchasing decisions, and eighty percent say they have visited a retail store just because of a digital sign.

  1. RFID technology

Ask any store owner or manager what they despise doing most, and “managing inventory” is sure to top the list. Hours are spent on stock-taking; 62 percent of retailers blame human mistakes when things don’t add up.

The time spent physically counting stock is unnecessary now that RFID technology exists. By scanning RFID tags—small chips that transmit product data to a portable reader—inventory levels can be updated in real-time.

RFID technology’s advanced applications go beyond simple inventory tracking and now include robot-operated stores. Whenever a customer picks up an item from a shelf, the scanners inside the shelves record what they’ve taken. The RFID reader sends the customer’s information to the payment terminal at checkout.

  1. Smart checkout

It won’t be long before the standard checkout process is deemed antiquated. When shops don’t use mobile POS, customers have to wait in line for a long time. Sixty percent of shoppers cite long checkout lines as a major hassle, but two-thirds also believe automation could help.

Take a look at some of the smart options that are killing the checkout line:

  • Contactless payment

Using a contactless payment method has the potential to reduce transaction times significantly. Customers may pay for their purchases quickly by tapping their credit card or smartphone on a payment terminal.

  • Installment payments

When faced with the inability to utilize their chosen means of payment, over one-third of consumers say they have walked away from a transaction. The concept of “buy now, pay later” (BNPL) is becoming increasingly common. Help your clients manage the cost of large purchases by extending the length of their payments.

  • Digital receipts

Sixty-three percent of customers prefer to buy at stores whose products have a less environmental footprint. Another 58 percent said they are likelier to patronize green businesses. Sending a copy of the receipt by email is a great way to save paper and get consumer information.

  • Self-checkout

Consumers like self-service stores because they may browse at their speed. Use a system like Mashgin for a seamless transition to self-checkout.

Smart checkout is possible with a point-of-sale system that provides the advanced functions consumers desire.

  1. Optimizing cloud performance

Many businesses struggle to handle the high costs associated with cloud computing. The main reason is that they have no idea how much of their cloud resources are being used. Specifically, 54 percent of firms state that poor oversight is the primary cause of resource waste. The cloud, however, offers an option in the form of automated processes. Seventy-five percent of CIOs agree that automation improves profitability and agile operations and creates customer delight.

With the help of cloud automation, your IT department can effectively build and maintain cloud resources. It improves efficiency and reduces the security concerns associated with manual processes.

  1. QR codes

QR codes are small black squares arranged in a barcode-like pattern that the camera can scan on a smartphone to reveal confidential information. Although quick response (QR) codes may seem outdated, they are coming back due to social distance rules. Fifty-nine percent of US consumers say they anticipate them becoming commonplace in stores.

The following are some use cases of QR codes in stores:

  • Place Shopcodes next to product displays to allow in-store customers to easily complete their purchases from the convenience of your website or social media page.
  • Include QR codes on paper receipts to encourage customers to leave feedback via survey or review.
  • When your store is too full to accommodate any more customers, have them scan a QR code to be added to a virtual waiting list. They will be notified via text message when it is their turn to enter.

Conclusion

The aforementioned technological advances may be unmistakable indicators of the arrival of the retail industry’s next generation. The concern is whether or not you can adapt quickly enough to the changes in the market. Adapting to new technologies is essential to staying in business, and if done well, may become a source of competitive advantage.

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