Nowadays, consumer expectations are higher than ever, and the ability to catch and keep their attention has become the focus for many small and large retailers alike. According to a recent Gartner study, digital sales have been steadily increasing, however, in most retail sectors, the majority of total sales are still coming from brick-and-mortar stores.

Many retail companies are either struggling or investing heavily in order to ensure that their customer focus stays within their stores, rather than a competing brand.

The central question that all retail and consumer goods companies are facing is: How do we attract new customers while making sure that we keep things interesting enough for our current customers?

Create a Customer-Centric Experience

In order to attract and retain customers, retailers have to create an immersive in-store experience. One way to do this is to use cloud technology and data analytics to better understand your customers’ preferences and anticipate the next up-and-coming trend in whichever field of retail you are in.

With the right digital technology, retailers will be able to track and monitor customer behaviors in real-time throughout the store. This will help to create a connected store experience – you can increase customer engagement by drawing customers to curated products and promotions based on their movements and actions as they browse throughout your store. This way, you are creating a unique and personalized experience and showcasing products that are specific to each customer’s interests as they shop.

How Does This Affect Your Operations?

In the same sense, while monitoring your customers’ in-store activities in real-time, you can also employ the right technologies to help you improve your everyday operational tasks. This includes real-time inventory tracking on your product shelves, in-store virtual assistants to be the eyes and ears of your staff to make sure nothing is missed, as well as in-store robots.

By incorporating a hybrid staff of humans and smart machines, retailers have the ability to create a personalized experience for their customers, while improving the efficiency of internal tasks and store operations.

These Companies Are Already Doing It

These ideas may seem far-fetched, but there are companies that have successfully implemented this. According to a recent Gartner report, the companies that have been able to incorporate technology into their products include:

  • AWM Smart Shelf – A smart shelf technology that tracks inventory, customer activity tracking, smart LED display and more.
  • Spacee – A simulation technology whereby customers feel like they’re interacting with the actual product. While it’s actually a 3D printed or molded replica of the original product with the images of the product projected onto the model that tracks the customers’ movements, customers feel as if they are handling the real thing.
  • Swyft – A fully automated physical location that offers retailers to sell to their customers anytime, anywhere. No staff required.