IoT is radically transforming the whole world in a unique way, it is not only changing the way consumers live, work and play- they are dramatically changing complete industries and no exception in retail industries. IoT is the next biggest revolution in the retail industries, but are you people wondering how, what IoT will do in the retail sector? Let’s discuss it further.
Before moving ahead, you should know how IoT works
IoT is the ecosystem of physical objects that are interconnected and can communicate through an internet or a network without any interruption of humans.
Just imagine you are shopping from your favourite store and suddenly your mobile buzzes with a notification of discount on the product that you are buying! Now you’re supposed it to be impossible, but thanks to IoT which makes it possible, as sensors used by retail stores can identify the presence of loyalty program customers and send discount notifications whenever consumers are standing in close proximity to products. It may seem to be imaginary, but this experience is closer than you think, with the IoT app development.
IoT will be particularly disruptive to the retail industry. Already we have realized retailers experimenting several ways to use intelligent, connected devices to offer new services and reshape customer experiences. Research by the Global Market Insight, Inc says IoT retail will eclipse $30 billion by 2024. It will include every facet of retail industry from manufacturing to inventory management.
There are several ways in which IoT is boosting retail industries and sensors are being used to monitor customer satisfaction, provide supply chain insights, inventory management, monitor food safety and track assets.
Trends in Retail IoT
There are several benefits of IoT in retails industries, there are five of the top trends to look out for in 2021 and beyond.
1. Automated Checkout
Every retailer can relate it very well that long lines deter customers from purchasing products and often, returning back to your store. But on the other hand, retailers can feel unprofitable to pay multiple employees to work during busier shopping time. That’s where IoT plays a vital role. A system can be set up to read the tags on each item when a customer leaves a store. A checkout system would then tally the item and cut the cost accordingly from the mobile payment app. This results in quicker purchases, happier customers, and reduced costs for retailers.
2. Smart Selves
To ensure that they are still in stock and also verify that the goods are never lost on various shelves, workers need to concentrate on keeping track of inventories. To robotize both of the functions, you can use smart shelves, while simultaneously detecting possible robbery.
Smart shelves are equipped with weight sensors and the use of Radio Frequency Identification ( RFID) tags and readers to search both display and stock shelves for goods and objects. When products are running low or when items are not put in order on a shelf, Smart Shelves give you the details, making the transfer of inventory more accurate and cost-effective. In addition, each RFID tag will be linked to a reader to enable Smart Shelves to detect in-store theft.
3. Personalized Discounts
If you have frequently returning customers, you would love to reward them for their loyalty. You can set up sensors around the store with IoT that give loyalty offers to some customers when they stand with their smartphones near items if certain customers sign up in advance for a loyalty programme.
In addition, you can use IoT to monitor products that a customer has been looking at online, and when she is in-store, give that customer a customised discount. Imagine if your client scanned your purses online, and then got a discount on her favourite purse in-store? You can customise each discount using IoT to optimise your conversion rates, rather than providing generic discounts on a wide range of items.
4. Improving Customer Experience
Consumer experience is critical for the fortunes of the retail industry. Therefore, retailers use several resources to reach out and attract customers. Point of purchase digital signage along with relevant content enables store owners to approach one more customer to advertise their items and increase customer interaction. According to the report by an independent internet research company, approximately 68 percent of buyers change their decision to purchase based on in-store messaging, and because of POP displays, 29 percent of buyers buy the goods unplanned. For sending personalised recommendations and best services to customers, data analytics based on purchasing history, consumer expectations and store visitors can be used.
Today, retail is facing common issues such as in-store navigation. BLE and Wi-Fi integrated IoT gadgets help promote in-store navigation and enable consumers to locate items according to their needs. Integrated lighting controls not only assist with energy saving, but also allow managers to study the movement of shoppers over certain periods of time in the shops.
With the help of heat maps, the shop layouts can be configured according to the requirements of managers to keep the store lit.
5. Digital signage and IoT
Shops may use digital signage in order to boost customer experience. These may be interactive displays in-store, intuitive touch screens for smartphones, or even apps that are digital-out-of-home (DOOH).
These can go along with beacons or other smart devices to assist retailers, based on the captured data, with real-time design deals, targeted promotions, and product groupings.
Beyond the league of display boards, IoT pushes digital signage. There is potential to gather information about purchase habits and behaviour. In fitting rooms, touch screens may recommend alternative designs or measurements, call an assistant, or suggest accessories. Stores will collect data on the trials of shoppers and final buying choices.
Built-in systems of facial recognition that identify you as you walk by take IoT’s spookiness beyond the wildest imaginations of everyone. The digital display can be changed by these systems to do what is likely to attract the interest and business of the consumer.
To lay a foundation for IoT and a better environment, it is important for retailers to consider taking steps now. The biggest IoT challenge is the rapid evolution of the reach and variety of innovations that can be used in a linked ecosystem. In retail, specifically, evaluating, handling, and acting on the package of data flowing in and from all the connected devices is the greatest and immediate obstacle for organisations to overcome. The time for IoT discharge is now. It tackles one of the most important problems: how to cater to customers with an intimate, seamless, and differentiated experience.
In this current competitive climate, retailers who take the first move in this room stand to gain an important advantage. Our own perspective will continue to develop and expand, and we expect additional opportunities to be further observed. However, one thing is obvious that retailers need to be wide-ranging in their thought, consider imaginative applications, and use supporting technologies.