Across the board retailers are seeing the value in adopting IoT-enabled solutions, putting the customer experience at the centre of their strategies.
The retail space has seen swift changes in the last two years. It goes without saying the pandemic brought exceptional challenges to supply chains, keeping shelves stocked, the massive shift to e-commerce buying, and the closing of thousands of brick-and-mortar stores. Online purchasing skyrocketed, accounting for 37% of today’s total retail spend, according to Deloitte. With limits on access to physical retail sites, many thought this might be the end of traditional in-person shopping.
Competing against online shopping has been brutal. Keeping up with the massive discounts often and convenience of one-click buying presented a significant challenge for physical locations. Store managers faced the demands of renting costly retail space, pressure to offer deep discounts in order to be competitive, which in turn often resulted in excess inventory to be managed. The global health crisis brought a major reset, seeing retailers adapt to a new reality.
In this post-pandemic retail world, new digital habits or patterns of behaviour are beginning to stick. As a result, customer expectations of in-store shopping have changed dramatically. Hard-wired to always be connected, 90% of consumers are now expecting digitally enhanced journeys. Stores are now seen as the medium to interact with a brand on a more personal level, where the customer is in the driver’s seat of their shopping experience.
Retail leaders at NRF 2022
The renewed interest in physical stores sees retailers further invest in digital initiatives for better shopping experiences, smoother operations, and increasing revenue. This marks the turning point of true omni-channel and personalised retail operations. Yet, how do global retailers strategically remodel their operations and accelerate digitalisation?
These key market dynamics topped the agenda of the world’s largest retail trade association event, the National Retail Federation (NRF), in New York City. Across the three-day event, the tech industry highlighted the role of IoT-enabled solutions in further driving greater sustainability, customer service, and health and safety.
IoT giving edge to physical stores
Emerging technology helps retailers step up their game in the digital world and capitalise on these new customer trends. This optimistic outlook is in line with the latest McKinsey IoT report, which sees IoT in retail environments registering an economic market value of $1.1tn by 2030.
Outside of zipping robots across supply chains, how is IoT adding value to retailers?
Silicon Labs joined in a discussion with Zliide and ThinkIN as part of the Innovation Lab, showcasing how wirelessly connected, IoT-enabled devices are here to lift the consumer shopping experiences and maximise profitability. By combining smart asset tagging with real-time indoor location intelligence, the showcased solutions are accelerating retail commerce digitization, increasing customer engagement, and driving revenue growth.
Less friction with self-checkout
Today’s customers will not hold back in voicing their complaints about poor in-store service. Powered by the Silicon Labs’ BGM220 Bluetooth modules, Zliide provides a new level of customer convenience, bringing the digital world into physical shops.
Attached to all store items, the Zliide smart asset tag goes beyond the traditional use case of loss prevention. With no compromise to security, customers get access to valuable brand and product information before deciding on their purchase. Just by unlocking the anti-theft tag via Bluetooth, customers can check out at any time and proceed with touchless payments, giving staff personnel more time on the salesfloor.
Pushing the boundaries of personalisation
Digital stores offer great real-time opportunities in measuring and analysing how shoppers roam the aisles. Seeing what displayed items are performing, how they are converting, and which ones are left at the changing room is powerful insight for store key performance metrics. Collecting all these data points can change the store’s position and turn it into a source of insight for the overall organisation. ThinkIN provides just that: granular customer knowledge from the department level down to the product category, alongside behaviour analytics.
Having access to the exact customer positioning within the store provides any retailer great visibility throughout the shopping journey. Coupled with in-store shopping analytics, it enables unrivalled personalisation. Just like in an online setup, retailers can deliver up-to-date personalised offers, engage in cross-selling programs, and push faster in-store routes based on shopping lists.
Create a new value generation platform
Retailers across the board see the value in adopting IoT-enabled solutions, putting the customer experience at the center of their strategies. By integrating these solutions in their systems, across warehouses and logistics platforms, IoT is accelerating the adoption of digital technologies.
Silicon Labs is here to optimise wireless connectivity for smart retail solutions, with market-leading security certification to safeguard the retailers’ brand and business. The Wireless Gecko Series-2 SoCs empower device makers create secure and intelligent devices with a short time to market.
Connect with the Silicon Labs team to learn more about their retail loss prevention solutions and visit their website for more insight.
– Written by Diana Varga, IoT Marketing Manager, Silicon Labs –