Since summer is on the way, I recently made a trip to the garden centre.
After choosing a few smaller items, I went to choose a new barbeque. A member of staff guided me through the various models and even showed me a demo video from his personal iPhone. I made my decision and was asked to go to the till to check the stock and pay. Luckily it was in stock. The cashier scanned all of my items and advised me that I’d need to go to the collection point in the car park to collect the barbeque. So I made my way down to the collection point.
To get to the outside collection point, I had to go through the main exit and was told that staff would need to check all my items in the trolley against my receipt.
Great! More work for the store and more waiting for me.
Should it really be this hard to buy a barbeque?
When I got to the collection point, there was a line of nine barbeques. The store operative asked me which barbecue was mine. I pointed it out, but he didn’t check my receipt to see which one I had actually paid for!
I finally escaped. On my drive home I thought about how the store could have done things more efficiently and given a better customer experience.
First of all, the sales assistant by the barbeques could have an enterprise class mobile computer and printer to take customers through the product information. They would then be able to check whether items are in stock, put in an order and print a ticket to take to the cashier or self-checkout for the total shop. This would also help the store to maintain a more accurate view of inventory.
That same sales assistant could then communicate with the collection team using his mobile computer and instruct them to get the customer’s order ready. At the till the customer could present their receipt to the cashier to simply rescan and show that the goods had left the building
With those communications in place, the collection point would have the customer’s order ready before they got there and could greet them by name when they arrive to collect it. Better still, they could even bring the item straight to the till.
That’s what store mobility looks like and it’s the future of bricks-and-mortar retail. Why? Because 67% of shoppers had a better in-store experience when store operatives had the latest technologies. What’s more, 66% of shoppers say they spend more when operatives are helpful 1.
Mobilising staff is the key to both operational efficiency and to delivering the kind of customer experience that will create advocates for your brand.