High Tech Shopping

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High Tech Shopping

09/03/2008
In tough economic times, retailers must seek ways to differentiate themselves from their competition if they want to stay on top. Interactive devices have become one of those key differentiators. When a retailer goes 'high tech' and provides the customer with a unique shopping experience, the customer will likely not forget it. To create lasting impressions, retailers implement interactive devices that engage loyal customers and attract new ones.  

Interactive devices in retail serve various purposes -- they help retailers save time, money and drive customer loyalty. Grocery is at the forefront of implementing interactive devices. For instance, many grocers offer self-checkout, where shoppers can avoid long lines and scan and bag items as they go.

The grocery cart itself is becoming an interactive device. Some of today's shopping carts feature attached display screens. The screens show advertisements based on the customer's precise location in the store.

Digital signage also continues to be a key differentiator among retailers. Attractive, colorful and frequently animated, digital signage allows customers to interact through specialized touch screens. Target, Wal-Mart, Kroger, Best Buy and Albertson's have already jumped on the in-store media bandwagon with successful implementations of digital display units.

Wireless Kiosk
Motorola's space-saving micro kiosk is an interactive self-service platform that offers a color display with a touch screen that supports bar code scanning for access to item information. The MK2200 Micro Kiosk also offers audio and video support for a wide variety of interactive multimedia applications, as well as wireless and Ethernet connection capabilities for access to a store's network and product data from virtually anywhere in a retail environment.

Express Coupons
The Touch-n-Save interactive kiosk from Customer-Facing Media (CFM) allows grocery shoppers to interact through a touch screen kiosk. The interactive kiosk stimulates meal-panning ideas, provides recipes, creates shopping lists, dispenses coupons, and delivers useful and engaging content that helps improve the overall grocery shopping experience. The kiosks feature full-color displays with full motion graphics and video capabilities. An integrated high-speed thermal printer also allows consumers to quickly print recipes, detailed shopping lists and in-store coupons.

Eco-Friendly Checkout
NCR FastLane self-checkout provides a user-friendly, streamlined self-service experience for consumers. The platform offers a refined design for expanded retail environments, and provides operational efficiencies for retailers through options such as integrated cash and coin recycling. NCR FastLane also includes energy-conserving features, such as NCR's two-sided receipt printing, to support sustainability initiatives.

In-Store Advertising
MediaCart, by Media Cart Holdings, advertises products to the customer while they are making purchasing decisions. The MediaCart features a high-resolution video display anchored to the cart and delivers full motion video, marketing messages and paid advertisements. As customers navigate the aisles, messages are displayed at precise locations allowing marketers to present their brand value at the right place and time. Consumers can locate brands, check prices and scan items right at their shopping carts.

Loyalty Kiosk
HP self-service kiosks help retailers create a customized platform to meet unique business needs. HP's self-service kiosk platform includes pre-consultation and design. These kiosks also integrate software and hardware, including thin client desktop PCs and point-of-sale systems, as well as post-sales support. The self-service kiosks support order entry, product searches, photo processing and loyalty card applications.

Animated Screens
Signagelive from Fastrak offers digital content and screen management software that can replace or enhance traditional printed signage and posters. Signagelive can be updated from a central location at any time. Retailers can create date and time specific play lists of numerous types of media content including still images, animations and video. Content can then be distributed to up to 1000 screens and can be managed from any Windows-based laptop.