Are You Doing Enough to Increase In-Store Customer Engagement?

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Are You Doing Enough to Increase In-Store Customer Engagement?

By Joe Skorupa - 10/02/2017

Retailers are challenged to deliver engaging brick-and-mortar experiences in unique and relevant ways. To meet the challenge, many are turning to mobile POS to engage shoppers at the critical point of decision, according to new research from RIS News.

In a new Targeted Research report titled “Unlocking the Mobile POS Experience,” retailers strongly agree that customer-facing benefits of mobile POS are a key factor in improving customer engagement experiences.

​​​​​​​For example, the top three customer-facing benefits chosen by a solid majority of retailers are: improving the customer experience to build loyalty (56%), reducing customer friction and frustration (56%), and improving face-to-face customer engagement (53%).

However, back-end productivity benefits of mobile POS are also cited. These include accessing real-time inventory (58%), enabling associates to sell products not carried in stores (44%), and enabling stores to increase labor productivity (44%).

Other takeaways from the report include:

 

  • A solid majority of retailers (53%) say mobile POS has a realistic timetable for return on investment (ROI), which is an important factor. Of these, the largest group (25%) believes ROI will be achieved in just 12 months.
  • The greatest “business impact” by far, chosen by 64% of retailers, will be an increase in productivity for associates and managers.
  • The word “impact” was chosen carefully to refer to both positive benefits, such as increasing flexibility to redesign floor plans (42%) and replacing some cash-wrap stations (36%), and negative impacts, such as adding complexity for associates and managers (28%).
  • While it is true that more than a third (36%) acknowledge some cash-wrap stations will be replaced by mobile POS the reality is that only 8% believe a large number of cash-wrap stations will removed. The store of the foreseeable future will have both fixed and mobile POS.
  • About a fifth (19%) actively have mobile POS in the field today. This figure is comprised of chainwide deployment (8%) plus deployment in select stores (3%) and piloting (8%).
  • 58% of retailers plan to deploy mobile POS within two years.
  • The top deployment obstacle cited by retailers is ensuring there is effective WiFi connectivity and bandwidth in the store to run the mobile POS devices (53%).
  • Once in place, mobile POS technology offers a wide range of datapoints that can be tracked to demonstrate ROI and ensure new levels of productivity. The top two are mobile POS sales per store per day or week (chosen by 75%) and percent of mobile POS sales per total store sales (64%).

Mobile POS delivers powerful enterprise applications at the point of decision. The benefits are diverse and clear, according to retailers polled in the study. Also, ROI is a realistic expectation in a reasonable one-year timeframe.

Mobile POS devices have the added advantage of converting clerks into product advocates, problem solvers and brand ambassadors, which produce satisfying engagements that competitors will find hard to copy.

To download the study and obtain a full set of takeaways and charts click here.

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