Five Technology Upgrades for Renovating the Retail Shopping Experience

Despite headlines declaring the death of malls, people still love shopping. In fact, 72 percent of people plan to shop in stores as much as they did last year, according to a survey of more than 5,000 consumers. But expectations for that shopping experience are changing rapidly as the digital and physical worlds blend. And for many retailers, there’s a significant gap between their customers’ expectations of what constitutes a timely transaction for the in-store experience.

Enhance the Retail Experience

Technology investments to engage shoppers and improve the in-store experience can be enhanced through five upgrades:

  1. Slow Internet connections that prevent conversion shopping. Eighty percent of smartphone users make in-store purchases with their phones. Retailers want to converge the virtual and physical storefronts so that they can push offers to customers based on what they’re looking at and where they’re standing, and turn show-rooming into shopping. But offering personalized deals depends on a reliable connection to your stores.
  2. Associates can be enabled to field shoppers’ questions or check out customers anywhere in the store. Point-of-sale (POS) systems don’t need to be in one place. Having associates with tablets or other mobile devices who can move to where the customer is means questions are answered quickly and sales are rung up promptly. But mobile inventory lookups and mobile payments depend on a failsafe connection to your stores.
  3. Video capture can be streamlined. You aspire to provide effective store security, understand the dynamics of customer flow through the store, or use facial recognition to personalize ads projected on digital screens. Without video capture, you’re missing out on the opportunity to know that a customer is walking past the beverages display and that she likes IPA beers—and to project a six-pack and a reminder that it’s on sale. But digital video is a heavy-duty, latency-sensitive application that depends on a failsafe connection to the stores—and also can’t drown out transactions and other critical applications.
  4. Location-based apps with personalized offers need to be supported on limited in-store Wi-Fi. Stores are engaging shoppers with mobile apps that provide maps, coupons, videos and product information. They personally identify consumers when they pull into the parking lot and communicate throughout the shopping experience. Mobile engagement apps need a failsafe connection to work.
  5. Coupons for upselling, cross-selling and loyalty rewards are always on due to crisp Wi-Fi and Internet connections. Retailers like Michaels and Bed Bath and Beyond rely heavily on coupons to draw customers into the store. Imagine their disappointment—and lost sales—if shoppers can’t use the coupons because of the store network is down. Driving deeper customer loyalty depends on a failsafe connection.

Deliver a Better Shopping Experience with a Failsafe WAN

Retailers need last-mile connectivity to their stores that delivers rock-solid reliability, consistent application performance and strong security. That’s why retailers like Patagonia have turned to Talari to build a failsafe last-mile connection.

A Talari Failsafe SD-WAN enables retailers to deliver a better in-store shopping experience. Phone calls, digital marketing offers and other latency-sensitive applications can share network peaceably with inventory updates, backups, email and other traffic.

Behind the scenes, the network adapts in real time to actual network conditions and bandwidth demands. Packets are sent over the best possible path for each application and protocol type, whether that’s MPLS, broadband, 4G/LTE or metro Ethernet. If a store link goes bad or goes down, a Talari SD-WAN network adjusts in real time so shoppers’ and associates’ connections are not interrupted.

The retail industry is under siege from cyber attackers, and an SD-WAN can provide better overall security with the ability to create security zones for trusted and untrusted broadband links, only allow legitimate traffic into store networks, and encrypt traffic to guard against spying and protect account credentials.

Learn how a Talari Failsafe SD-WAN can help retailers meet growing expectations for a connected, responsive shopping experience. Download the whitepaper.

 

 

 

Categories: Application Performance/Application Quality, Branch Connectivity, Business Agility, Intelligent WAN, IT Challenges, Network Capacity, Network Reliability, Software Defined WAN (SD-WAN)

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