Retailers must step up tech game in a safe way

Retailers must step up tech game in a safe way
Brick-and-mortar retailers need to improve in-store infrastructure to increase footfalls successfully. - File photo

Dubai - Wi-Fi analytics to gain capabilities in a highly-competitive market.



By Rajiv Prasad

Published: Thu 5 Sep 2019, 10:35 PM

Last updated: Fri 6 Sep 2019, 12:40 AM

In the highly-dynamic market, retailers must invest in new and upcoming advancements to upgrade store infrastructure and stay up-to-date with current industry trends. Furthermore, technology allows continuous connectivity and the seamless transfer of data across the various devices. As a result, it becomes convenient for retailers to offer premium shopping experiences to retain old and gain new customers.
As e-commerce gains popularity, brick-and-mortar retailers need to improve in-store infrastructure to increase footfalls successfully. Retailers can use people counting to gain a better understanding of the critical drivers of store traffic and identify customer shopping patterns to improve conversion rates.
Brick-and-mortar retailers can also gain customer data through other concepts such as heat-mapping analytics. This allows them to identify the popular areas and the success rate of promotional strategies in-store. Many firms also heavily rely on Wi-Fi analytics to gain capabilities in a highly-competitive market. It helps in effectively managing the day-to-day operations within the firm. Moreover, it helps to gain an understanding of the areas that require improvement and track assets in-store. However, this system is not accurate and may not record customer data if their devices are switched off or on flight mode.
Retailers can also utilise in-store beacons to track customer movement in-store through Bluetooth-based transmission as it generates high customer engagement. Moreover, it allows firms to transmit product information to customers to generate awareness conveniently. However, it becomes difficult to limit the range in which the data is collected and accurately gain customer information.
Due to rising online threats, customers demand more secure shopping experiences. As a result, retailers must invest in a safer online strategy to collect and store valuable customer data. One such approach is to introduce artificial intelligence software. According to a recent market study, over 60 per cent of business executives plan to incorporate AI-based technology in their infrastructure to maintain a competitive positioning in the market.
AI-based software in people counting systems allows accurate queue management in-store. Moreover, it provides real-time customer data and helps in delivering personalised product offerings. It also helps in processing large amounts of data and locating patterns to conduct tasks more efficiently. AI sensors track in-store customers with more than 90 per cent accuracy. Retailers can also invest in other advancements such as machine learning and cloud technology to ensure that the data collected is secure and can be accessed conveniently.
AI also provides new and improved ways to improve managerial capabilities by gaining insights on staffing necessities to enhance the efficiency of corporate resources. In addition, it also allows eliminating duplication of tasks, thus saving costs and other resources.
 Rajiv Prasad is CIO of Xpandretail. Views expressed here are his own and do not reflect newspaper's policy.
 


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