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Retailers Prioritize In-Store Mobile Tech But Struggle to Implement It

Dealer Scope – Mobile technology is impacting the way that consumers shop in physical retail stores. I know. Shocker, right? But the findings from a recent survey dive a little deeper into the role mobile technology has had in how retailers think about their own in-store shopping experiences. And while they certainly are aware of the role of mobile technology in their stores, they haven’t necessarily figured out the best way to capitalize on it.

The findings come from BRP’s 2019 In-Store Mobility special report, which is based on the consulting firm’s wider consumer engagement study.

In it, BRP found that 63 percent of customers reported using their phones while in a store shopping to do perform various tasks. Customers, then, clearly expect to, and actively do, have their phones out and active while they’re in a store shopping. As such, 49 percent of retailers said that the customer mobile experience is one of their top customer engagement priorities.

Read Full Article: Retailers Prioritize In-Store Mobile Tech But Struggle to Implement It

Empowering Retail Associates with Technology

There is no denying the power of mobile technology as a disruptor in the retail industry. Mobile devices are ubiquitous in our lives; dramatically changing how we interact with each other, obtain information and shop. Having this constant, virtually unlimited amount of information at our fingertips has changed consumers’ shopping behavior and elevated our expectations for customer service.

While much of the retail mobile technology discussion addresses the effect on consumer behavior, this proliferation of tablets and mobile phones also offers many new opportunities for associates to enhance customer service. Putting mobile devices in the hands of store associates is a necessity to “keep up” with the customer who has a plethora of information available at her fingertips.

Associate mobile devices enhance the shopping experience through access to real-time inventory and customer data and offer the ability to service customers and process transactions anywhere in the store.

Within the next three years, the number of retailers that use mobile devices and tablets in the hands of associates will double to three-quarters of retailers. This increased rate of adoption is driven by several factors, including the declining price of mobile technology, the growth in maturity and range of tools, and the critical need for store associates to have the necessary tools to enhance the customer experience and “keep up” with the abundance of information that customers have at their fingertips.

However, retailers need to continue to improve their mobile capabilities through refined processes, better technology and enhanced training for associates. Powerful associate tools are only helpful if associates are trained to use them effectively, especially when associates are dealing with sensitive customer information. Unfortunately, retailers are still playing catch-up to consumers that constantly research and buy products on their ubiquitous mobile devices.

Download the full report to better understand what retailers are doing and should be doing to ensure they can “keep up” with their customers.

I appreciate you opinions on this topic. Please share your comments and ideas below.

David

Mobile purchasing maintains upwards trajectory: BRP

Luxury Daily – As consumers’ usage of mobile continues to grow and the number of shoppers who are comfortable purchasing via smartphones also rises, luxury retailers and brands need to keep their mobile offerings at the forefront.

According to a study from BRP, 41 percent of consumers are likely to increase their purchasing on mobile devices over the next 24 months, and 85 percent have a least bought one item via smartphone. Currently, 33 percent of those surveyed claim to frequently purchase on mobile devices.

“With consumers’ pervasive use of mobile phones for everything from researching to buying products, retailers need to continue to offer more mobile applications and services,” said Marty Whitmore, senior vice president and practice lead at BRP, retail consulting firm. “Some consumers even choose one store over another based on what mobile features a store offers.

“According to BRP’s consumer survey, 67 percent of consumers indicate that mobile coupons and promotions are an important factor in determining at which store they shop,” he said.

Read Full Article: Mobile purchasing maintains upwards trajectory: BRP

49% of retailers name in-store mobile experience a top priority

Retail Dive – Thirty-three percent of consumers said they frequently make purchases through their mobile devices, and 41% of those surveyed said they plan to increase their frequency of mobile shopping via smartphones or tablets in the next 24 months, according to BRP’s “2019 Special Report: In-Store Mobility.”

The study also found that 63% of consumers rely on mobile phones while shopping in-store to compare prices, search for offers and coupons, and check inventory, among other things. Additionally, 85% of consumers have purchased a product via mobile app. Meanwhile, 49% of retailers said customers’ in-store mobile experience is one of their top customer engagement priorities.

The survey results also showed that 66% of retailers already offer mobile point-of-sale capability in their stores, and 40% of consumers admitted they are likely to shop at stores offering mobile POS.

Read full article: 49% of retailers name in-store mobile experience a top priority

Survey: How are customers using their phones in the store?

Chain Store Age – Smartphones are increasingly becoming a brick-and-mortar shopping tool, according to a new survey from BRP, a retail consulting firm. Results from “Special Report: In-store Mobility” indicate that 63% of consumers use their phone for product research, pricing and availability while they are in a store. This frequency of in-store smartphone usage goes along with general trends of mobile shopping’s growing popularity.

According to the study, 85% of consumers have purchased a product via a mobile app, 33% frequently purchase via their mobile device, and 41% plan to increase shopping frequency on their phone or tablet in the next 24 months. Despite the popularity of smartphones with consumers, only 49% of retailers indicate that the customer mobile experience is one of their top customer engagement priorities.

“As customers become more comfortable and proficient with utilizing mobile technology and researching information on their own, retailers need to offer expanded customer-facing mobile services to enhance the shopping experience,” said Marty Whitmore, senior VP and practice lead, BRP. “The proliferation of tablets and mobile phones provides new opportunities for retailers to enhance customer service by offering store associates tools to ‘keep up’ with the abundance of information that customers have at their fingertips.”

Read Full Article: Survey: How are customers using their phones in the store?

63% of Consumers use their Phone for Product Research, Pricing and Availability while they are in a Store, According to New BRP Report

The Customer Mobile Experience is a Top Priority for 49% of Retailers

Boston, MA – February 28, 2019 – There is no denying the power of mobile technology as a disruptor in the retail industry. Retailers realize that mobile devices are ubiquitous and recognize that a mobile device in the hands of the customer and associate holds tremendous opportunities to enhance the customer experience in the store. According to BRP’s SPECIAL REPORT: In-Store Mobility, 85% of consumers have purchased a product via a mobile app, and 33% frequently purchase via their mobile device. Mobile shopping (browsing or buying) will continue to grow as 41% of consumers in the BRP Consumer Study indicate they plan to increase their shopping frequency on their phone or tablet in the next 24 months.

“As customers become more comfortable and proficient with utilizing mobile technology and researching information on their own, retailers need to offer expanded customer-facing mobile services to enhance the shopping experience,” said Marty Whitmore, SVP and practice lead, BRP. “The proliferation of tablets and mobile phones provides new opportunities for retailers to enhance customer service by offering store associates tools to ‘keep up’ with the abundance of information that customers have at their fingertips. Associates can use mobile devices to answer customer questions, provide personalized recommendations, locate products and complete the transaction anywhere in the store.”

BRP’s SPECIAL REPORT: In-Store Mobility is based on findings from the BRP Consumer Study and the 2019 POS/Customer Engagement Survey and offers insights into how mobile devices are changing the consumer shopping journey.

The SPECIAL REPORT: In-Store Mobility highlights:

IN-STORE RESEARCH

  • Customer expectations:63% of consumers utilize their mobile phone while in a store to compare prices, look for offers/coupons, check inventory, etc.
  • Retailer capabilities:49% of retailers indicate that the customer mobile experience is one of their top customer engagement priorities

COUPONS AND PROMOTIONS

  • Customer expectations:67% of consumers indicate that mobile coupons and promotions are an important factor in determining at which store they shop
  • Retailer capabilities:57% of retailers offer mobile coupons and promotions to their customers in the store

MOBILE POINT OF SALE (POS)

  • Customer expectations:40% of consumers are likely to shop at a store offering mobile POS
  • Retailer capabilities:66% of retailers currently offer mobile POS in their stores

To download BRP’s SPECIAL REPORT: In-Store Mobility, visit:

https://brpconsulting.com/download/2019-special-report-in-store-mobility

The special report platinum sponsor is TSYS, the gold sponsors are AptosDiebold Nixdorf, ECRS and Fujitsu, and the silver sponsor is STORIS.

About BRP

BRP is an innovative retail consulting firm dedicated to providing superior service and enduring value to our clients. BRP combines its consultants’ deep retail business knowledge and cross-functional capabilities to deliver superior design and implementation of strategy, technology, and process solutions. The firm’s unique combination of industry focus, knowledge-based approach, and rapid, end-to-end solution deployment helps clients to achieve their business potential. BRP’s consulting services include:

Strategy | Business Intelligence | Business Process Optimization | Point of Sale (POS)
Mobile POS | Payment Security | E-Commerce | Store Systems and Operations | CRM
Unified Commerce | Customer Experience | Order Management | Networks
Merchandise Management | Supply Chain | Private Equity

For more information on BRP, visit http://www.brpconsulting.com.

Shoptalk 2019: IBM helps retailers deliver happiness. Again and again.

Retail Dive – Welcome to the new economy of emotion. The 4 P’s of marketing are being eclipsed by the most complicated P of all: people. Their relationships with you are now being made (and lost) on the emotional connections you make with them at every contact.

Happiness is contagious. Dissatisfaction is viral.
We’ve all read about it. If an organization isn’t in sync with how consumers think and feel, those unhappy people tell others – and do it very loudly. But if a retailer shows true concern for shopper preferences, they’ll take notice and feel understood, maybe even validated. Because they’re happy, they may become your best advocates.

You need to remove friction from the buying process with experience-driven commerce. This means providing local content and integration throughout the process. New research from BRP, retail consulting firm, found that about 89% of retailers will put mobile solutions in the hands of their store associates over the next three years.

Read Full Article: Shoptalk 2019: IBM helps retailers deliver happiness. Again and again.

Mobile Payments Self-Checkout Future In The Hands Of New MPOS Systems

Payment Week – It’s easy to see why a lot of people like the idea of mobile payments and self-checkout. Being able to serve as your own checkout stand means that you’re always the next person in line. That speeds things up and makes your overall customer experience better for the faster pace. However, access to such tools is as yet limited, but that’s a point a lot of retailers are looking to change thanks to significant improvements in mobile point of sale (mPOS) systems.

Already, we’ve seen several brands make this leap, like Nike and Loblaw, giving customers the ability to put their mobile devices to work in handling checkout duties. In fact, within the next three years, 63 percent of retailers plan to roll this concept out in their own stores, which likely means we’ll see this show up in more familiar and larger brands soon.

There’s a good reason for this ramped-up release schedule: sheer profit potential. The global POS software market is expected to hit $30.9 billion just by 2024, and with retailers rapidly planning to introduce the systems, the chances for repeat business and happy customers goes up with it. After all, word from BRP, retail consulting firm, says that 56 percent of shoppers are more likely to shop with retailers that will let them share carts from one channel to another, like online to in-store. And in general, 73 percent of customers want access to self-service systems like self-checkout. Failing to provide at this point is like showing whole rafts of customers the door.

Read Full Article: Mobile Payments Self-Checkout Future In The Hands Of New MPOS Systems

Consumers Choose Retailers that Offer a Personalized Experience

Offering a personalized service requires identification of customers as soon as they walk in the store, but only 37% of retailers are able to identify their customers before checkout.

Customers want to shop wherever and whenever they want with the benefits of both the digital and physical retail environments. As consumers “check-in” on retailers’ e-commerce and mobile sites, they automatically receive personalized offers and recommendations based on their purchase and browsing history. However, most shoppers are still anonymous when shopping in a physical store so they don’t get the same level of personalized service.

We recently conducted our 20thAnnual POS/Customer Engagement Survey and compared our findings on retailer capabilities with consumer expectations from the BRP Consumer Study (report coming soon!) to identify gaps between customer expectations and retailers’ capabilities. BRP’s SPECIAL REPORT: Personalization gives you a closer look at what consumers expect from their shopping experience and what retailers can currently offer.

Our study found that 79% of consumers indicated that personalized service from a sales associate was an important factor in determining at which store they choose to shop. Consumers understand that receiving personalized service requires retailers to identify them. While this has been the normal standard online or via mobile, identifying the customer in the store is a little more difficult and not as common.

Most retailers who identify customers in the store use the customers’ mobile phone as the identification tool paired with a combination of beacons, WiFi, MAC address, etc. While 64% of consumers are comfortable with retailers identifying them via their mobile phone when they enter a store, as long as it means they are offered a personalized experience, only 37% of retailers are able to identify their customers prior to checkout.

Customer identification is a requirement for any type of personalization of the shopping experience and if a retailer can’t identify the customer until she is at the checkout then it’s too late to empower the associate to influence the current purchase decision. Without early identification of the customer, retailers miss critical engagement opportunities to deliver a personalized customer experience and increase sales. And in today’s crowded and highly competitive market, personalization is a critical component for optimizing the customer’s shopping experience.

The customer has spoken and she wants a personalized shopping experience in the store, how are you going to provide her that experience? Download the report now to understand how retailers are measuring up to consumer expectations.

I appreciate your opinions on this topic.  Please share your thoughts and comments below.

Ken

Ready When I Get There: Mobile Takeout Is A Rising Restaurant Trend

Forbes – On a bitterly cold or snowy winter night, it’s understandable that many diners may want to order their dinners delivered. But a new study of restaurant guests and executives has found that an increasing number of people want another option: the ability to order food in advance via mobile apps and have it waiting for them when they arrive.

Now, you might say that’s the same as takeout, which restaurants have offered for generations. But instead of calling in an order and risk being placed on hold or talking to a busy place, pre-ordering via mobile app can be done with a few key strokes. And, it allows for much easier customization than might take place during a conversation.

At the moment, about 20% of diners are using a pre-order option, according to a study from BRP, retail consulting firm, and Windstream Enterprise. But mobile pre-ordering is used by about 32% of millennials, the study found. “They are less likely than older generations to dine out and more inclined to order their food for off-site consumption,” it said.

Pre-ordering can save money, since many delivery apps charge a fee to bring food to your door. There’s often a service charge, too, and the diner is generally expected to tip on top of those costs.

Plus, delivery times can be unpredictable, and food may not be in optimum shape once it arrives.

Read Full Article: Ready When I Get There: Mobile Takeout Is A Rising Restaurant Trend