Self-checkout tops list of solutions
After one of the most successful retail holiday seasons in more than a decade, consumers have shown that there is still a desire to shop. However, with more products for consumers to sort through than ever before, it is those retailers that provide time-saving technology that have consumers coming back again and again, according to a new survey by tech company, SOTI.
When it comes to different types of self-service technology, self-checkout is by far the most preferred solution with 53% favoring the technology, followed by digital kiosks / scanners to enable price checks, coming in at a distant second (23). In fact, self-checkout is so popular that 77% of consumers would be very or somewhat comfortable in a retail setting where only self-checkout technology was offered.
The Connected Retailer survey looked at U.S. consumers shopping habits both online and in-store and found 76% of consumers indicated they have a better in-store experience when retail sales associates are armed with technology. Additionally, 67% of the respondents said retailers that utilize more mobile technology enable them to save time.
“SOTI found that consumers have a better retail experience when technology is integrated, whether through the availability of self-service kiosks or sales associates armed with mobile technology on the sales floor,” says Carl Rodrigues, CEO and president of SOTI.
However, consumers don’t want technology because it provides a ‘cool’ or ‘wow’ factor, they favor mobile technologies that help them save time. These factors make it more important than ever for retailers to deploy mobility management to ensure that the technology is integrated in-store works properly and meets consumers’ needs, he adds.
“There is nothing more disappointing to a shopper than a kiosk that doesn’t work or a barcode that doesn’t scan,” Rodrigues says. “The in-store technology experience is no longer in its infancy and if retailers aren’t utilizing these innovations, they are putting themselves at a competitive disadvantage.”
The SOTI consumer survey also found that 66% of shoppers prefer self-service technology over interacting with the retail sales associate. When it comes to different types of self-service technology, self-checkout is by far the most preferred solution with 53% favoring the technology, followed by digital kiosks / scanners to enable price checks, coming in at a distant second (23). In fact, self-checkout is so popular that 77% of consumers would be very or somewhat comfortable in a retail setting where only self-checkout technology was offered.
“Self-checkout has become more prevalent at big box retailers,” Rodrigues says. “In 2018, we expect smaller retailers to adopt more of these technologies to meet shopper demands as innovation in mobility management provides the opportunity for retailers of all sizes to transform the way they operate.”
Delivering the goods
Technology is not only transforming the way people shop and purchase goods, it is also transforming the way goods are delivered, which has become a critical piece of the overall retail experience. According to the SOTI survey results, consumers are starting to warm up to in-home delivery services with 60% stating they would be very or somewhat comfortable with new shipping methods offered by retailers, including drones (29%), autonomous vehicles (28%) and in-home delivery methods (33%).
“While companies are trying to innovate the way packages are delivered, there is still a whopping 40 percent of consumers that have yet to embrace these innovations within the supply chain,” Rodrigues adds. “This indicates that it is incumbent upon innovative retailers to develop consumer trust and familiarize their customer base with the benefits of these new delivery methods.”
For more information, download the E-book, Technology Spurs Shopper-Centric Retail, here.
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