Arm Your Employees with Technology and Information
by Roger Mitchell, Director, Retail Product Management
Knowing more about products than your customers used to be a given – the retailer used to be the only source of product information that customers would have. All that has changed, however, with ever increasing accessibility to the Internet. Today’s retailers must accept that their staff cannot always know more than customers, but one way to make sure your store staff still adds value to the shopping experience is by equipping your employees with the right technology.
Consumers today are looking at products in store with the objective of buying it later – for a cheaper price – online. This year alone, 50% of mobile phone users are predicted to scan barcodes, read reviews, compare prices and then even buy online while still in your store, which makes your shop floor a showroom for your rivals.
To make your stores more than just showrooms for online merchants, at a minimum, you need to achieve parity of access to information between employee and shopper by providing mobile technology-enabled touch points for staff.
Mobile devices can also give store employees access to information that customers do not have. By allowing store staff real-time visibility of inventory and to hold inventory or outright sell inventory in other channels, you are tapping into an enormous sales opportunity.
Emerging "clienteling" technologies can also give you information on customer preferences. Your staff is not there just to stock the store and process transactions. By connecting them with the online space and information about the customer, you can return them to their role as sales people whose superior knowledge is the more powerful tool they have.
Posted by RedPrairieBlogs on 6/15/2012 3:10:44 PM