Tracy Watson 25/02/2021 #Popular #Retail 7 min read Even with the global pandemic making in-store shopping difficult, Americans have transitioned to online shopping. In fact, in 2020, consumers spent $861.12 billion online, which is a staggering 44% increase from the year before. While brick-and-mortar stores may be struggling, they have also implemented some new smart shopping technologies to make the entire experience more pleasant. Let’s start exploring these solutions to see how they benefit both retailers and consumers. Shopping for the Best DealSmart shoppers are always looking around on various platforms to get the best deal on a particular item. In the past, this meant that they would need to spend time searching for platforms and then keep coming back to see if the price changed. Nowadays, all they would have to do is install a smart shopping app, like The Find, where they can save all of the items they were looking for on various store websites. The app will even alert the user when the price of an item drops or a sale going on. This helps the shopper get the best price available and helps retailers since it entices people to buy. While this is an excellent solution for eCommerce, what innovative retail technologies can brick and mortar stores offer shoppers? Let’s explore this in the next section. Streamlining the In-Store Experience With Smart Shopping Carts Last year, Amazon introduced the Dash Cart, which is a smart shopping cart that makes in-store shopping faster and more enjoyable. Basically, all the user has to do is take the items off the shelves and place them in the cart, which is equipped with sensors, cameras, and computer vision algorithms. This allows shoppers to skip the checkout line in the shopping cart, ring up all the items, and charges the credit card attached to the Amazon account. The cart also has a touchscreen that allows shoppers to interact with Alexa to access their shopping lists and coupons. The Dash Cart will appear first in Amazon’s Woodland Hills grocery store in California and then start branching out to other stores. Smart Shopping Campaigns Another issue stores need to deal with is directing shoppers to specific products they are looking to sell. One of the ways solutions stores are using to overcome this problem is by using digital signage. Basically, there are screens or monitors located all over the store that show various items that the store is looking to sell quickly. However, this offers a greater level of personalization. For example, let’s say the customer has downloaded the store mobile app on their phone and is walking around the store. The sensors “notice” this customer and display advertising relevant to them on the screens. There is another innovative retail technology used by brands worldwide called beacons. Let’s explore this next. Beacon TechnologyOne of the most significant benefits of eCommerce is that it allows brands to collect data about customer behavior and the products they looked at most frequently. Is it possible to collect such data about customers shopping in stores? Thanks to beacons, this is now possible. This smart retail technology is already being used by industry giants, like Auchan, a French multinational retail group, the 35th largest employer globally. They use beacons to track shoppers’ movements around the store, which gives them all kinds of insights into the aisle shoppers visit most often and how long they stay there. This technology is often used in conjunction with the digital signage we talked about earlier to show customers directional information so they can find the items they are looking for faster. AR Mirrors Many brands have already started using augmented reality to allow customers to try on products such as clothes and makeup digitally. While such innovative eCommerce solutions have become commonplace, brick-and-mortar stores are looking to harness the benefits of AR themselves as well. One of the ways they are doing this is by using AR mirrors. Customers no longer need to make a trip to the fitting room to try on clothes since they can stand in front of the mirror, and they will see how they look in the close right then and there. Such innovative retail technology can also be used for advertising purposes to attract customers walking by since it can be used as smart window displays. When a person stops by the display to look at the clothes, the mirror will automatically show how they will look in those clothes, which entices them to come into the store. Start Using These Innovative Retail Solutions TodayIf you are looking to implement any of the solutions mentioned above or any other retail software solutions, you will need an experienced development partner to create them for you. Skywell Software has extensive expertise in developing all kinds of retail software for industry leaders and can create a customized solution that meets your exact needs.