“Did you find everything you were looking for? ” This is the question the most attentive sales floor associate will ask customers before they exit a store. If the response is “Yes, thank you! ” then everyone’s experience ends on a happy note.
But what happens when the answer will be “No, actually, I didn’t. You were all out. ”? You cannot teleport out-of-stock item onto the shelf for the customer’s experience to be made whole immediately.
Create one too many of these unfortunate experiences, and the particular customer is usually apt to move their shopping elsewhere, where the experience is smoother and more rewarding.
Future of Retail Technology at Brick-and-Mortar Shops
The customer friction can be costly. But problems like stockouts and long lines — and the customer friction these people beget — are promising to become a thing of the past for retailers that adopt the most recent innovations in machine learning, artificial intelligence (AI), as well as the Internet of Things (IoT).
With smart technologies like touchless shopping and automated on-shelf forecasting, customers are delighted with a frictionless in-store encounter that resembles the ease of online shopping. Innovative intelligent stores, or “smart stores, ” are popping up everywhere.
S. MART Pulls Back the Curtain with an Immersive Retail Journey
Enter the particular future associated with retail: At the SAP Experience Center location in Walldorf, Germany , curious minds can to step into the intelligent store “S. MART” for a journey into an innovative, sustainable retail enterprise within action.
Along with centers across the globe, SAP Experience Center locations are state-of-the-art innovation spaces for reimagining business using SAP solutions.
In October 2022, the SAP Encounter Center in Walldorf will certainly officially open its doors, which may be the first of numerous milestones in order to come on an ongoing transformation journey toward an even more captivating exploration in to SAP innovation worldwide.
The S. MART component provides a taste of all the available uses cases of SAP’s store technology ecosystem in 1 immersive grocery store experience. Peruse the particular aisles as a customer while simultaneously seeing how various types of data are captured in the back office, in order to gain insights into the shopping behaviors and interests of clients, more sustainable business practices, improved product performance, plus more efficient staffing.
To kick-start their own transformations, merchants can request a customized visit, where the SAP Experience Center is set up as the secure testing environment for use cases specific to their business needs.
Exactly how Digital Transformation Solves 10 Traditional Store Challenges
The value of building a store like S. MART goes beyond keeping shelves nicely stocked. Here are ten common challenges retailers encounter and how digital transformation through an smart store may solve them.
1 . Respond to customer expectations of personalized and immersive experiences
Personalized loyalty programs in-store and online offer customers the discounts plus rewards they will appreciate and are likely to use. SYSTEMS APPLICATIONS AND PRODUCTS solutions allow for businesses within the tech environment to effectively create products like augmented reality (AR) on mobile shopping. AR technology enables personalized encounters by turning a two-dimensional search into a full-fledged 3D immersion. The particular camera on the consumer’s device scans their real-world surroundings and mirrors the item in that environment. That way, consumers can virtually try before they buy. Learn more about how SAP supports AR technology like Adloid here . These types of customer-centric tools can help ensure that you are responding to client expectations associated with streamlined, electronic experiences and keep all of them coming back for more.
2 . Optimize product placement
Heatmapping allows for visualizing visitor traffic, while camera streams plus 3D vision sensors give demographic and soft biometric details such as time of day, age, gender, plus time spent at locations. Armed with this data, you can identify heavily trafficked areas and patterns within customer behavior, so you can better strategize product placement plus limited time offers.
3. Prevent stockouts
Demand forecasting helps prevent racks from going bare. Out-of-stock items, or stockouts, are caused by one or even a cluster of causes: unusually higher demand, supply chain disruptions, inventory miscounts, and improper planning.
Forecasting technology assists to deter those difficulties. Additionally, along with technology apps that maintain one consistent source associated with stock information across the provide chain, you can sustain a more accurate record of goods and further boost forecasting efforts. With the particular latest AI, you are able to a lot more effectively keep your shelves filled, and avoid lost sales.
4. Keep shelves tidy
Today’s customers expect stores in order to look tidy and organized. AI connected to video cameras can interpret if a product is misplaced, while sensor-based technology identifies if the shelf is definitely empty. Store personnel are usually alerted so they may act instantly and keep the shelves pristine.
5. Make the most out of limited storage space
Deep learning and device learning applied by AI surfaces actionable insights related to consumer behavior and supply chain fluctuations, enabling with regard to improved forecasting and more accurate inventory decisions.
With automated sub-daily demand predicting, you purchase what your customers are likely to buy at a particular time of day — no more, no less, making the particular most out of your shelf plus storage area and delivering what customers want when they want it.
6. Reduce food spoilage
According to a recent study , “Along the food chain, approximately 15% of food losses by weight and value derive from transport, warehouse, and retailing activities. However , for a variety of reasons, temperature abuse and improper handling in transport seems to dominate. ”
An effective way in order to make a dent in that problem is by making use of smart technologies to improve cold storage issues throughout the supply chain, through packing to marketing. In the retail location, as soon as freezers are open previous a set period or there is a deviation in the heat from the items, an alarm is triggered to alert store personnel to address the problem.
7. Become a more lasting enterprise
Historically, store companies are usually a major contributor of carbon emissions plus waste, putting them under the scrutiny of customers and regulators. With demonstrable sustainability methods, retailers can successfully differentiate their brands, attract new customers, and drive life-long loyalty. By harnessing the power of AI, you may perform accurate and responsive planning, thereby optimizing the particular flow associated with goods to reduce emissions, overstocks, and meals waste.
8. Minimize annoying checkout lines
We have come far from lengthy checkout lines, noisy cash registers, plus paper receipts. Customers can simply add products to their own virtual baskets and leave the store without any wait time at the point of sale. As noted, today’s consumers are digitally savvy shoppers who expect suppliers to provide a streamlined experience in-store and on the internet. “Just walk out” experiences help recreate the simplicity and ease of shopping online.
9. Comply with maximum occupancy limits
When it is important to know that maximum capacities are not exceeded, and costly fines are avoided, you don’t need a person standing at the door with the tally counter in hand. Automated analysis associated with all persons entering plus exiting the store are kept within real period, and store personnel can be notified whenever maximum capacity is reached. Plus, along with historical information, you can plan staffing requirements accordingly.
10. Motivate employees
Machine studying and AI technologies from SAP can serve in order to reduce rubbing points within the workforce. For example , insights in to the busiest times and shop sections may inform optimized staff schedules, reducing stress burnout. Automatic alerts regarding empty racks and incorrect product positioning can help simplify an employee’s workday, thereby increasing engagement. And streamlined forecasting and replenishment processes replace cumbersome and inaccurate manual efforts, enabling store associates to be a lot more efficient plus successful in their inventory keeping responsibilities.
Along with intelligent features that foster a future-forward work atmosphere, employees are usually more empowered, productive, and happier. And at the end of the day, a happy workforce thrives on serving happy customers.
Markus Marsch, head of Value Experience Strategy and Operations, explains exactly how retail encounters like S. MART are the future of retail.
More Inspiration on the Way
SAP Encounter Center areas around the world showcase innovative options and use cases for all industries plus lines of business. We are creating more of these experiences — like an SAP-driven store fashion studio in New York and the smart cities experience in Dubai — to display how SAP builds the particular innovative solutions that run the world’s most intelligent and environmentally friendly enterprises.
SAP Experience Centers connect businesses to SAP solution experts, inspire transformation via innovative demos and immersive stories, and engage enterprise transformation by means of hands-on workshops.
Top image: The S. MART intelligent store in the SYSTEMS APPLICATIONS AND PRODUCTS Experience Middle in Walldorf, Germany, officially opens within October 2022. Visitors can peruse grocery store aisles like a customer after that get back-office analysis in real time.