In a time where the in store shopping experience may seem to be on a decline, there is a new trend emerging in brick and mortar retail stores. Retailers are now embracing technology in the face of being challenged by its online rivals. The goal is to get shoppers out of the habit of online shopping and back in the store, but this time with a more advanced technology based experience. These “smart stores” will feature trendy ways to make the most of your shopping experience. From interactive mirrors, robots, and smart shelves, to much more user friendly self-checkout methods.
Robots that interact with shoppers are one feature that will be seen trending in 2017. The multilingual robots will assist shoppers by greeting them at entry, guiding them to specific products, and suggesting outfit ideas at clothing retail stores. Also in clothing retail stores, smart mirrors are being tested at high end locations. These technology based mirrors range in features. Some offer 360 views of an outfit, shoppers can compare outfits side by side, and also have the capability to capture photos and share them online with friends. Smart shelves have emerged already in stores such as Amazon Go in Seattle. They feature digital price tags and information about the products and monitors when items are picked up and removed from the shelves. The shopper’s Amazon account gets charged automatically when you leave the store, making way for shoppers to avoid check out lanes. The desire to avoid check out lanes has long been fulfilled as many stores have already featured self check out kiosks. A more advanced trend in self check out is emerging with scan and go apps. The scan and go apps allow shoppers to scan the items with their mobile device and simply scan your device to purchase the items during checkout.
These innovative stores are sure ways to create a convenient, interactive, and entertaining shopping experience for customers.Though a few trends have failed when users found them to not be so user friendly. Wal-Mart’s scan and go app project was scrapped after shoppers found it too difficult to use. One thing all retailers must consider is to be sure that the technology they are incorporating are as user friendly as their customer’s mobile device or at home computers.
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