Innovative Retail Technologies

MAR 2013

Innovative Retail Technologies (formerly Integrated Solutions For Retailers) is the premier source for innovative yet pragmatic technology solutions in the retail industry.

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Special Report The Mobile Retail Associate: 4 Best Bets And Best Practices For 2013 The need to arm associates with mobile devices is well-defined. The applications, hardware, and networks are market-ready. Now we face the biggest challenge: the systemic and operational change necessary to make it all work. by Matt Pillar I f the word on the street is any indication, you've year. Perry Ellis is going mobile chainwide this quarter on the accepted the challenge of a relatively new phenomheels of a successful Q4 2012 pilot. Home Depot has been enon; consumers are wielding mobile technology spending big money on mobile enablement of its associates that gives them better access to product, price, and since 2010. Bass Pro Shops, Disney Stores, Lowes, Target, promotional information than your store associates have. Walmart, and Starbucks … the list of customer-facing mobile To mitigate the risk that consumer-held smartphones and technology adopters is long and quickly getting longer by tablets might displace the frontline associates who were once the day. As these venerable brands that shape the consumer a great differentiator in your provision of value — costing you experience invest heavily in their mobile strategies, you need opportunities to make impressions, guide and save sales, box to be on that list as well. out your competition, and develop customer loyalty along The rollout activity we've seen to date has made it abunthe way — you're ready to rush mobile devices and applications to your stores Figure 1: Winners Well Ahead In Store Manager Mobility at a breakneck pace. "How long has your company been actively involved According to recent research from in adding MOBILE technology-enabled touchpoints for RSR (Retail Systems Research), STORE MANAGERS within your store?" the 46% of poor-performing, or Winners Average Laggards "Laggard," retailers who haven't made plans to arm store managers with mobile access to critical back office Longer Than 36% and customer-facing applications are 1 Year 22% ignorant at their own peril; the 36% 0% of RSR's "Winners" who have had 21% mobile devices and applications in Budgeted 9% store managers' hands for more than Project 23% a year are greatly outperforming their competition in terms of customer ser21% Less Than vice, brand satisfaction, operational 26% 1 Year efficiency, and sales. See Figure 1 at 23% right. 14% No Nordstrom is expanding the deploy26% Plans ment in its well-publicized mobile POS 46% push to include new cross-channel order7% ing flexibility. JCPenney announced its Project Planned, 17% Not Yet Budgeted intent to displace physical POS stations 8% with mobile POS across the chain this Source: RSR Research, May 2012 12 RetailSolutionsOnline.com ● March 2013

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