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How to Use Technology to Delight Your Customers

Technology for Customer Satisfaction

It’s important that retailers make sure their customers have the best possible experience in their stores. Everything from the colors on your digital signage to the way your salespeople greet customers influences how your customer feels in your store.

Increasingly, the technology you use plays a large role in the customer experience. When paired with a deep understanding of customer wants and needs, brick-and-mortar stores can use technology to delight their customers and create a unique customer experience.

There are so many technologies it can be a dizzying task to determine what will work for your store. Whether you sell groceries, or jewelry, the tips we’ve chosen below will help you incorporate technology into your store in ways that will keep your customers satisfied.

Make the Most of Digital Technology

Digital technologies run the gamut from tablets, to in-store kiosks, to digital signage, to augmented reality. Survey the available tools and ask yourself what would enhance your customer’s experience.

Digital signage is an incredibly versatile tool. By integrating digital signage with cameras, you can create motion-activated displays and digital fitting rooms. Signage can interact with customers’ smartphones and sales associates’ tablets. It can display a live feed with your social media channels and the news, or show live weather updates.

Think beyond simply using digital signage to broadcast at your customer; rather, make it an interactive experience and consider how to add value to your customer. For example, if your live weather feed shows it’s raining outside, take the opportunity to promote the umbrellas or the warm, hearty soup you sell. Or make your digital signage touchscreens that allow customers to find the information they need.

Augmented Reality can let your customer test-run a product without ever leaving the store – or even stepping in a dressing room. By giving a digitally enhanced view of the world, customers can virtually try on clothing, see how a couch would appear in their living room at home, test what a certain shade of foundation will look like on their face, and much more.

Learn From Online Retailers

As a brick-and-mortar store, you can learn from the strengths of online shopping to improve the customer experience – and it’s important you do, given online shopping has changed consumer expectations.

Online retailers can dig into analytics to understand customer engagement and see the paths customers take to purchase. Similarly, it’s important for brick-and-mortar retailers to understand their store traffic, shopping time and abandonment, to understand what factors influence a customer’s decision to purchase a product. Invest in retail analytics and people counting systems to learn how your customers are shopping and buying.

Customers can peruse an infinite number of products online. Offer a similar experience using in-store kiosks to create an endless aisle to allow customers to order products not available at their location.

Enable Your Salespeople to Do More

Your customer chose to visit your store rather than shop online. They may have done that because they value the interaction with a sales associate and want to talk to someone with in-depth product knowledge.

Help your sales associates to go a step further. Equip them with mobile devices to give personalized service and put the power of the internet directly in their hands. Consider if your store can:

  • Turn your sales associates into mobile cashiers with mobile point-of-sale (POS) systems. Coming to your customer rather than making them wait in a long checkout line adds a personal touch showing how important your customer is to you.
  • Make your inventory visible in real-time to each sales associate, so they can immediately tell a customer whether a product is available at that location or at another location nearby. If it’s not available at the store the customer is in, have your salesperson put it on hold at another location and ask whether it’s more convenient for them to pick it up at the other location or have it brought to the current one.
  • Implement personalization algorithms to help a sales associate suggest related products the customer may want. Have they come to your sporting goods store looking for a new baseball bat? The algorithm could suggest batting gloves and a bat pack as well.
  • Make it easy for your associates to find product specifications. There are few customer experiences as frustrating as asking questions of a sales associate who knows less about the product than you do. Give your salespeople all the information they need at their fingertips so they can answer any question a customer has.

Go Mobile with Location-Based Services

Use beacon technology “find” customers near your store or restaurant and deliver targeted messages about promotions or products to them. When customers download these apps, the apps use their smartphones’ GPS to find their locations, and can offer a huge marketing boost to your business.

Similarly, indoor location-based services (LBS) gives you the same tracking and promotional abilities, but within a store. Companies have embraced such services, which use Bluetooth beacons to push notifications to customers as they walk around the store.

Not only does LBS allow you to promote your products, it also gives you valuable real-time behavioral data. Using LBS, you’ll be able to learn what promotions are most successful, when customers are most likely to act on a notification to come into your store, and much more information that is indispensable in driving sales and loyalty.

Pair this data with your retail analytics and people counting data, and you will have an incredible wealth of information about your customers and how to optimize the in-store experience for them.

There’s No Time Like the Present

When it comes to using technology to improve the customer experience at your store, the only barrier is your imagination.

Whether you use technology to deliver an augmented reality, to capture retail analytics, to empower your salespeople to offer better customer service, or to offer potential customers deals as they walk by your store or restaurant, technology can reach your customers in ways that will delight them.

Don’t wait to offer that experience to your customers. Choose just one technology that will improve the customer experience at your retailer, and go for it today.

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