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How mobile devices are transforming the retail experience

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In-store retail technology is revolutionizing the way stores operate     

Technology in retail stores is becoming increasingly widespread as retailers digitally transform their stores. Mobile devices are an especially popular choice— 71% of retailers currently equip their associates with mobile technology and 11% are planning to add it within the next 12 months. 

From regional mass market retailers like Target or Indigo to high-end, international luxury like Jimmy Choo or Boggi Milano, the power of mobile devices impacts 3 critical areas:

  1. Inventory
  2. Clienteling
  3. Checkout

Let’s dive into the numbers and see mobile devices in action transforming the store experience for both customers and associates.

Omnichannel inventory is accessible 

Mobile devices play a key role in omnichannel inventory accessibility.

64% of employees use mobile devices to access product information. Customers are more informed now than ever. They can pull out their phone and look up specifics on the products they’re seeing on shelves. Associates need to be able to match this knowledge, and then some, to add value to the in-store experience. Having a mobile catalog that can be searched with just a few key words allows them to provide specific answers and make personalized suggestions without ever leaving the customer’s side.

57% of employees use mobile devices to access inventory levels and product availability. Associates need to be on the go with customers browsing the store. So, they don’t have the time to search inventory reports or store shelves for available merchandise. Having that information on one local device makes it quick and easy to see available merchandise at a glance.

Associates are enabled to be digital guides

Clienteling is perhaps the #1 area where associates need mobility.

47% of employees use mobile devices for clienteling and/or assisted selling. Associates can get the best view of the customer along critical stops in their shopping journey, like fitting rooms or along the aisles. They cannot afford to miss critical details while flipping through a binder. Mobile devices make the clienteling process systematic and automatic. Associates can then direct their full focus on consistently providing a personal shopping experience.

37% of employees also use mobile devices for education and task management. When talking about making genuine connections with people, there simply isn’t a training course you can take. Authenticity relies on finding a rhythm with each customer and each interaction, and showing up ready to adapt. Using mobile devices as “training” on the floor, gives hands-on experience from the moment they walk in. They can then learn in real time what works and what doesn’t. Meaning continuous growth throughout their lifecycle to reach their fullest potential.

Checkout is optimized for conversion

Mobile checkout makes the in-store experience as efficient as online.

61% of employees use mobile devices for taking mobile payments. Long checkout lines are a huge pain point in brick and mortar shopping. 86% of customers are willing to leave the store due to long lines. This ends up costing retailers billions in lost revenue. Mobile devices with POS capabilities are huge cost and time savers. Shoppers can be in and out quickly if they need. Retailers keep purchases flowing smoothly which increases the number of sales (not to mention saves on the system itself). 

54% of employees use mobile devices to make online sales and order out-of-stock products. The world of retail exists without channels. Limiting store associates to only brick-and-mortar sales leaves potential on the table, both in terms of sales and customer experience. Cross-channel selling not only increases an associate’s scope for sales, but adds value to the customer experience. Now, they don’t have to wait until they get home to make online purchases, they can do it right from the store floor.

To learn more about how retailers are using mobile devices to help alleviate modern store operations challenges, check out the 2022 Store Operations Benchmark Survey.

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