Four Key Types of Retail Technology Being Adopted Now
In a previous article, we discussed how the retail industry is increasingly turning to retail technology and leveraging omnichannel strategies to combat competition.
In this article, we’re going to take a look at some of the specific technologies retailers are adopting and how they’re using them.
We’ve put together some of the key statistics and insights gleaned from the recent 2017 Retail Vision Study by our partners at Zebra Technologies.
Mobile Point-of-Sale Devices
A whopping 87% of retailers say they’re planning to implement mobile point-of-sale (mPOS) devices by 2021. The reasons for this are simple.
In-store customers are looking for a more personalized and convenient shopping experience, and mPOS devices enable this by allowing retail staff to greet customers and provide seamless, secure checkouts anywhere in the store.
For example, instead of waiting in long checkout lines or having to go to a counter for assistance, retail staff use an mPOS device to accept debit and credit cards in a store aisle.
Handheld Mobile Computers with Scanners
To complement their mobile strategy, retailers are also pairing mPOS devices with handheld computers with scanning capabilities. In fact, 86% of them plan to invest in these solutions by 2021.
These devices can be paired easily with an mPOS solution and are typically used to run retail business apps for processing orders and looking up pricing, inventory, and shipping options.
Mobile access to product information and payment acceptance gives retail staff a dynamic duo of resources to serve customers anywhere in the store and provide a truly personal and convenient experience.
Mobile computing and scanning are also crucial strategies for automating warehouse and in-store fulfillment processes, particularly with the rise of omnichannel retail and click-and-collect options for consumers.
Enterprise-Grade Tablets with Scanners
Mirroring their investment in handheld mobile computers and scanners, 85% of retailers are adopting tablets for similar purposes.
Enterprise-grade tablets have the power to run resource-intensive business apps and put pricing, product availability, and delivery options in the hands of store staff.
But they’re also a great way to empower warehouse or backroom workers. For example, rugged enterprise tablets can be used to help manage inventory and fulfill online orders, with either built-in scanning capabilities or handheld companion scanners that can be worn on a lanyard.
Kiosks and Self-Service Terminals
With an ever-increasing expectation for convenience, many customers are looking for ways to purchase products quickly, without having to go through a checkout or interact with store staff.
Major retailers, such as Best Buy, have already begun capitalizing on this expectation by offering self-service kiosks and terminals for pricing and availability information as well as in-store ordering.
In fact, according to Zebra’s study, 78% of retailers have already invested in self-service kiosks or terminals, or they’ll be doing so by 2021.
These technologies allow customers to research, order, pay for, and even pick up products on their own terms, without having to wait in line or speak to a customer service representative.
The resulting convenience is great for those who prefer self-service, especially during busy shopping periods.
But it can also boost a retailer’s bottom line by enabling greater efficiency and reducing staffing requirements or allowing staff to be reallocated where they’re needed most.
What Are the Right Technologies for Your Business?
To learn more about the latest retail technology trends and how they can impact your business, download Zebra’s free 2017 Retail Vision Study.
You can also learn more and explore the best options for your business by contacting us at Strategic Systems. As a leading provider of technology solutions for some of North America’s top retailers, we’d be happy to provide a free consultation.