If you were to start listing technology that has made shopping easier today, you would run out of your fingers. So many discoveries that have revolutionized shopping have been made in the last half a century. Interestingly, technology is increasingly making the line between traditional marketing and sales to be a blur.
Technology that has made shopping easier today
Customers can browse and do purchases by merely clicking on the products’ images. Alternatively, they can scan the QR codes. Well known departmental stores have tried this idea of virtual stores and are reaping big. People passing by the stores are presented with the products’ 3D images, and all they need to do is scan, using their smartphones, the QR codes. Stores and manufacturers have deployed sales trucks across various cities. The sales trucks have rolling storefronts on their body panels. These rolling storefronts have the images of the products and their respective QR codes.
Apart from convenience, virtual stores also help customers to place virtual equipment and furniture in their homes and can visualize the final look. Secondly, virtual changing rooms have made it possible for customers to try on clothes without physically going to the shops. All that they need to do is scan their bodies using 3D and then match the outfits.
The scope of the use of beacons has evolved a great deal. Initially, beacons were used notify consumers if discounts were being offered. With technology, consumers can download the app of their retailers. These apps have beacons that help them to easily find the items they are looking for using their mobiles devices.
Digital price tags and smart shelves
Rather than using humans to update the prices of items on sale, retailers are using technology to monitor and change the prices of inventory real time. Smart shelves enable retailers to scan items on the shelf using sensors. This will ensure that prices are not only accurate but also fasten the process of updating.
Manufacturers can also leverage on the smart-shelf technology to prevent stock outs. The consumers do not need to worry about their favorite products being out of stock.
Social retailing and shopping
Incentives are added to make the shopping experience online memorable. Discounts are given, or other forms of currency are introduced. Platforms involved in social media are having in-app impulse buying. Consumers can buy products by swiping their thumbs. The advantage of using social media is that it can drive sales greatly whether it is off or online.
Here, product discovery is majorly through reviews generated by video. Companies such as YouTube have millions of video reviews on various products and services. Others like Google have rolled out products that help retailers to turn video into sales. Shopping videos are helping retailers and manufacturers to close the gap between when a product is discovered and when it is bought.
In conclusion, while technology that has made shopping easier today, there are still teething problems like leveraging on the technologies mentioned above to grow your brands and people are always slow when it comes to embracing new technology. Regardless of the challenges, technology is here to stay.