Retailer’s Competitive Advantage
The future of any retailer’s success is determined by its ability to adapt to its consumers’ evolutionary needs and provide for them effectively and competitively. By providing, one does not just mean the goods and services of the retail establishment but also the customer service which creates an exuberant atmosphere and allows the consumer to feel Wanted and Welcomed. The distinguishing factor between satisfactory and successful is one’s ability to leverage customer satisfaction and close the deal. In the 21st century it is imperative that retailers use advanced technology to gauge its clientele and expedite service which ultimately leads to increased sales.
Now what exactly do we mean when we say advanced technology?
Advanced technology refers to the various tools that retailers employ in order to offer customers with the experience, service, and knowledge they need in order to close the purchase as well as the ability to give the retailer an insight on the customer itself in order to tailor its customer service appropriately.
Currently, retailers are utilizing technology and putting forward many endeavors in order to really create unification between in-store and online shopping so customers can take advantage of the unique aspects both areas have to offer.
For instance, select brick and mortar stores are including aesthetically captivating visuals throughout the stores which engage customer interaction while simultaneously providing pertinent information about the stores (such as sales promotions, product locations, and store layout).
Take famous NBA basketball player and Olympian, Lebron,James for example; he just launched his new store Unknwn in Miami’s Aventura Mall. He has soared above everyone’s expectation on the courts and now he is doing so in the retail market as well; Unknwn encompasses 45 iPads kiosks which outline each sneaker thoroughly which is unprecedented user controlled interaction with the retail product. Every iPad kiosk is paired with a respective sneaker and present consumers with a myriad of different options for that particular sneaker; the shopper can select which clothes to pair the sneaker with, the price of the sneaker, and various other technical provisions.
Conversely, many online and e-commerce stores provide virtual test drivers that allow consumers to experience a real-store atmosphere. For instance, Sephora, a well-known makeup company, just launched an iPad App that has many extensive features and beauty tips; however, its most useful feature is its virtual mirror which allows consumers to test drive makeup before purchasing it. This feature uploads a picture and creates a step-by-step process for the application of whichever makeup product the consumer has selected; this allows for the customer to not only see how he/she would look like with it on but also know the necessary steps to take to create a professional look.
Overall, this novel feat will open up fresh possibilities for increased customer service and customer satisfaction in the future. After all the customer is always right. This is just one factor that comes into play when taking retail innovation into consideration -where retailers are using Technology for the competitive advantage . In my next blog we will be comparing apples to apples and juxtaposing two companies within the same industry and their various usages and innovations of advanced technology which gives one a competitive advantage over the other one.
By: Anuja Gaikwad
Team Groupsoft US