We’ve all heard about the potential for geolocation and retail in digital marketing campaigns. But here’s an insightful business case from Harvard Business Review that looks at the actual potential of marrying mobile apps with location-sensing capabilities and data analytics to take digital experience in stores to the next level.
Once you add the app/geolocation/data analytics trifecta to the in-store experience, physical stores can be much more effective in improving the customer experience and speeding service. Those stores that personalize the experience for shoppers through targeted promotions or instant feedback will put themselves on a more level playing field with online stores, the business case argues.
Big retailers are already testing location-sensing technologies, starting with navigation, promotional offers, and product reviews. That’s just a start. Retailers could potentially move on to solicit in-the-moment feedback to gauge customer satisfaction in the store and/or rate employee performance. Data could create “heat maps” that would show in-store problem areas (or conversely areas of opportunity) as the customer moves throughout the store.
There are many logistics issues to be resolved before the idea hits mainstream: from convincing customers to download the apps and training staff to interact with them, to the usual privacy concerns. But as the author (Robert Haslehurst from L.E.K. Consulting) points out, the technology isn’t the issue. Success will be in the hands of the retailers that come up with the most compelling strategy.
How would you feel about a retailer tracking your movements in exchange for better customer service?
By Werner Sievers, CEO