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Can location technology provide the experience shoppers expect? [Guest post]

How do retailers deliver the right message, at the right time, in the right place, to the ever-demanding tech savvy shopper?

Whether that is when they are sitting at home watching TV whilst browsing the web, or when they walk into a store on the high street, people want a seamless experience, that makes their life better and easier.

People no longer separate their online shopping experience from shopping in store – they are just shopping, and they expect the retailers to move with them through this experience. Shoppers want information at their fingertips, when they need it. They also expect this information to be relevant to them, based on their previous interaction with the retailer.

The latest innovations in location technology, combined with a powerful personalisation engine, can deliver this seamless experience. Location technology has been around for a while, and continues to improve. GPS and WiFi can now be complemented with beacons, to provide a more precise location in store. For example, retailers can know when a customer enters the store, or moves to the menswear section.

By providing this location information to a powerful personalisation engine like Horizon, messages and offers can be changed to reflect where the customer is right now, and delivered in real-time.

The Localz platform enables retailers to use the best location technology, for the experience they are trying to create. This is often a mix of GPS and beacon technology, but may also include NFC, WiFi and RFID.

Smart retailers are not just using location technology to provide customers with marketing offers. They are using it to enhance the customer experience, by providing messaging that provides a better service to the customer, by directing them to what they are looking for, or helping them to quickly and easily pick up a package.

For example, retailers can improve the Click&Collect experience for a customer, by reducing the queue time for collection. As a customer approaches the store, a customer can be sent a message to their phone, reminding them that they have a package to collect, and asking them if they would like to collect it now. If they say ‘yes’, the retailer’s staff prepare the parcel for collection, and the customer can be guided to the collection desk. It is at this time, that they can also receive a complimentary offer on their phone. The retailer may even have the complimentary item waiting for the customer. For example, if the customer is collecting a phone, the retailer may have the suggested phone case available for purchase at the collection desk.

For these service based experiences to be most effective, the retailer must combine the customer’s location with other data, to ensure that the complimentary information provided to the customer is the best possible information for that customer, at that moment. This provides the customer with a pleasant and engaging experience, reducing their wait time and providing them with information that is relevant for them.

By combining the power of the Horizon platform, with the Localz platform enabling the latest in location technology, retailers can truly deliver relevant personalised information to customers, when and where customers want it. Demanding tech savvy customers will not only be satisfied – they will be delighted.

This guest post was written by Nimmity Zappert, Head of Sales and Partnerships at Localz. You can view a video of how Localz has improved the Click&Collect experience for John Lewis here.

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