Converting the online experience into offline

'Yesterday' we tried to transform brick-and-mortar store experience to the online stores – Today we have to converting the online experience into offline.

Accenture’s 2014 seamless retail survey shows an interesting trend in retail in the US. And I am sure it’s not different to other countries. As I often said before the in-store consumer experience cannot be overlooked. Consumers aim to buy more from brick-and-mortar shops but they expect having the accustomed in-store shopping experience to match convenience of online.

More consumers are looking to take advantage of seamless retail services – omni retail experience – brand experience – no matter where and how whether online or in a local store.
Nearly 90% of consumers would travel to a store or buy online if retailers would offer real-time stock information. The ability to check product availability online before traveling to a store is the service that would most improve the shopping experience for 31 percent of U.S. shoppers surveyed.
19% of consumers enjoy to use “click and collect” (increase of 7% in 2013 from 12%) - Click & Collect offers all the benefits of shopping online with the added convenience of picking your groceries up at a time that suits you.

Shoppers are 'webrooming' more than 'showrooming' across all product categories, except grocery. Accenture’s study found that 78 percent of U.S. shoppers had webroomed (browsing online and purchasing offline) in the 12 months before the latest survey, while 72 percent had showroomed (going into a local store to explore a product and then searching online for a better price and making their purchase online).

There are many ways to convert online experience into stores - Just a few ...

Location-Awareness  &  Customer Identification

iBeacon is location service by Apple. It takes action when you approach or leave a location with an iBeacon. In addition to monitoring location, an app can estimate your proximity to an iBeacon - this can be a local store, a display, or any other point of interest, information or sale. Instead of using latitude and longitude to define the location, iBeacon ( uses a Bluetooth ( low energy signal, which the device notices.

Stepsaway is another shopping app that detects customers' smart phones when they are near stores in shopping centers or other public spaces. Stepsaway allows retailers to use a cloud managed platform to push notifications to customers within range of their stores.
I would love to share more information about Stepsaway but I could find too less information about it in comparison to ibeacon.

Pinpointing the consumers location is easier than ever before by these technology. It leads us to analytics which allows us to combine web analytics of local stores, web-store and the whole web.
Of course, another bonus to this development is that the local retailers will now be provided with e-commerce data that previously have been difficult for them to collect or combine. They'll be able to track the complete path that consumers take when they go about purchasing a product. These big data analytics will open a whole new world for retailers, who will use this data to understand how to layout their stores, not only for better sales, but also for better traffic flow and other efficiencies. Big data, in other words, is about to get a whole lot bigger - Big Data in the cloud - and everything real-time.

Magic Mirror - Virtual Dressing and Social Shopping

Burberry added RFID microchips – radio-frequency identification – in some of their clothes.
This means that when a customer wears the microchipped clothing, they can look into a mirror that transforms into a screen, which shows how the clothing would suit someone.

Using Pinterest to inspire in-stores

Nordstrom developed an iPad app for their associates that let them view the most popular Pinterest Pins and match those items with inventory levels by store and department. The app made it easy for associates to show consumers offers and alternatives influenced by fads and fashion trends and merchandise on floors in time. They attached signage (hangtags, cards and clips etc.) with the Pinterest logo to dresses, handbags and shoes that received the most engagement on Pinterest.

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