Retailers are keen to invest in IoT technologies


March 13, 2017 | By RetailME Bureau

In a highly dynamic retail world where consumers are always looking for a fulfilling shopping experience and retailers are keen to delight customers, nearly 70% of retail decision makers are ready to make changes to adopt the Internet of Things (IoT), indicates Zebra Technologies Corporation’s 2017 Retail Vision Study.

Around 65% plan to invest in automation technologies for inventory management and planogram compliance by 2021.

“Every inch of the retail industry is changing, from the aisles of the warehouse to the shelves of the store, and retailers are driving this change in a race to better serve customers. The 2017 Retail Vision Study demonstrates that retailers are poised to meet and exceed customer expectations with new levels of personalisation, speed and convenience,” says Mark Thomson, Retail and Hospitality Director, EMEA, Zebra.

“Zebra is committed to help retailers survive, and thrive, in this changing landscape by providing products and solutions that enable a successful omnichannel strategy with greater insights and visibility into store operations, associates, inventory and shipments,” he adds.

The report found that owing to continued rise of online shopping, retailers are being challenged to provide unprecedented levels of convenience to help drive customer loyalty. By 2021, 65% of retailers plan to explore innovative delivery services, such as delivering to workplaces, homes and even parked cars.

By 2021, nearly 80% of retailers will be able to customise the store visit for customers as a majority of them will know when a specific customer is in the store. This will be enabled through technology such as micro-locationing, allowing retailers to capture more data, accuracy and customer insights

Retailers are looking to create a seamless shopper experience with 78% reporting that it is important or business-critical to integrate e-commerce and in-store experiences.

To speed check-out lines, retailers are planning to invest in mobile self-scanning devices, kiosks and tablets to increase payment options. By 2021 87% of retailers will deploy mobile point-of-sale (MPOS) devices, enabling them to scan and accept credit or debit payments anywhere in the store.

Seventy-three percent of retailers rate managing big data as important or business-critical to their operations. By 2021, at least 75% of retailers anticipate investing in predictive analytics, software analytics for loss prevention and price optimisation and cameras and video analytics for operational purposes and the customer experience. 57% of retailers believe automation will shape the industry by 2021 helping retailers pack and ship orders, track inventory, check in-store inventory levels and assist customers in finding items.

EMEA specific findings

  • In 2021, 92% of retailers expect to offer click-and-collect, up from 50% who offer it today.
  • Today, 36% of retailers in EMEA know when specific customers are in a store but that number is expected to more than double by 2021.
  • In EMEA, respondents ranked out-of-stock merchandise (53%), the same product being available for less at another store (46%) and the desired item not being found (40%) as the top sources of consumer dissatisfaction today. Accordingly, retailers plan to reinvent their supply chain with real-time visibility enabled by automation, sensors and analytics.

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