Posts Tagged :

etail

Apex-Logo-Primary-update

Customer service to ‘compete with Amazon’

Self-serve locker systems are being prepared to allow rival online retailers to compete with Amazon Go.

Apex Supply Chain Technologies have revealed their new Apex AnyWhere line of self-serving automated systems at this year’s National Retail Federation (NRF) Convention.

The customer-facing, click and collect lockers aim to speed up and improve customer experiences with food and retail services by focussing on improving ‘last inch’ delivery, streamlining mobile ordering and working to ensure products reach customers as simply as possible.

“The technology Apex has on display at NRF shows the breadth and depth of our response to the rapidly changing retail landscape,” says Kent Savage, Apex Supply Chain Technologies founder and CEO, “they need to automate inefficient, manual processes and leverage the power of accurate inventory data.”

Traditionally manual processes such as managing handheld scanners, tablet computers and other inventory-tracking techniques run the risk of wasted time, which in turn wastes money.

Automation_Improves_Retail_Apex_nrf17

Apex aims to boost productivity and convenience in order to cause a decrease in customer queue times as well as allow employees to serve customers more quickly.

A large and increasingly growing competitor is Amazon, who already offers a highly streamlined and customer friendly interface.

Already implementing click and collect technology, drone delivery on the horizon and the announced Amazon Go to take on the high street retailers, Apex is hoping they can level the playing field.

“As bricks and mortar retailers race to reimagine and reinvent themselves to compete with Amazon and other ecommerce competitors, they must think differently,” said Mr Savage, “they can develop a competitive edge by embracing [online]-connected devices, like those we are showing at this year’s NRF show.”

 

 

Genration Z

‘Digitally Native’ generation still prefer shops

New figures reveal the first fully ‘digitally native’ generation still prefer brick and mortar shopping to online browsing.

Released by IBM and the National Retail Federation, the study reveals a massive majority of ‘Generation Z’ consumers between the ages of 13-21 still prefer physical shopping environments.

Specifically described as being born between the mid-1990s and early 2000s, Generation Z are the first children to grow up into the digital age, into a world of mobile phones, home computing and the internet.

67% of Generation Z prefer shopping in-store most of the time, with a further 31% still often shopping on high streets, indicating that just 2% of the ‘always on’ generation only shop online.

“Just as Millennials overtook Gen X, there’s another big buying group retailers need to plan for, and it’s even larger: Generation Z,” National Retail Federation President and CEO Matthew Shay said. “They appreciate the hands-on experience of shopping in a store.”

The global population of ‘Gen Z’ is set to reach 2.6 Billion by 2020, and are expected bring a huge amount of buying power, as estimates suggest the new generation have access to around $44 billion in disposable income.

66% say that product quality and availability are the top factors when choosing brand, although value is another major focus as over half admit to a lack of brand loyalty compared to other generations.

As technology is continuing to evolve, and eCommerce has changed to reflect that, a main concern for retail has been to not get left in the dust, with Mr Shay explaining that retailers need to continue to be “agile” if they want to stay relevant.

“Retailers are constantly focused on experimenting with new innovations both online and in-store to remain relevant to evolving consumer demand.”

 

Yankee Candle

Yankee Candle teams up with Toshiba for service revamp

Yankee Candle is preparing to deploy 1,400 Toshiba systems across stores in order to future-proof its business.

As it modernises its retail offering, the leading candle company will transform its point of sale with the Toshiba TCxWave.

“As the most recognized brand in the candle business, we are delighted,” said Toshiba Global Commerce Solutions’ US head of sales VP, Bill Campbell, who believes Toshiba will help Yankee Candles deliver “enriched shopping experiences for their customers, as well as a frictionless checkout.”

The technology offers a versatile design, and gesture touch-based screens, and will be set up across stores in the United States as well as Britain.

“We selected Toshiba’s [point of sale] solutions to support our new retail infrastructure,” explained Dave Harris, vice president of IT at Yankee Candle, who chose the company due to the “unique design, durability, product road map and ability to strengthen our customer engagement.”

Yankee Candle currently sells its products across 35,000 stores worldwide, but is hoping that further improvements to their own stores will encourage more customers to shop direct.

 

 

magazines-614897_1280

Industry Spotlight: Technology Trumps Tradition

With retailers constantly seeking new ways to interact with customers, digital technology has emerged as a way to deliver more relevant and engaging content. But how much notice do customers actually take?

A report released by global marketing solutions and communications provider, APS Group, uncovers some of the mysteries of customers’ interaction with store signage.

By using eye-tracking technology to measure the reactions of more than 1.6m shoppers, the study finds that almost double the number of people looked at and engaged with shop window displays if the retailer used animated, digital content instead of traditional print.

Results also demonstrated that not only are digital screens more appealing, but they also enable brands to tailor their messages and offerings to give customers what they want, when and where they want it.

 

To download a free copy of the whitepaper click here.

amazon_microsite

Blog: Toby Cruse: Amazon’s ‘Death Star’ to Take the Skies

Currently, if you want a package delivered from the Amazon’s airborne courier system in the UK, you need to have a large garden live near an Amazon delivery depot and want a very light package, but that’s looking to change.

The service, known as Prime Air, made its first successful touchdown in December, taking just 13 minutes between placing the order and arriving in the user’s back garden just outside of Cambridge.

While the online commercial giant has barely left the ground yet, plans have already been put forward to take the company to greater heights.

Discovered by CB Insight’s Zoe Leavitt, the new patents reveal ‘airborne warehouses’ designed to hang in the sky at 45,000 ft.

Described by Leavitt as Amazon’s very own “Death Star,” the patents also seemingly show designs of multi-purpose docking stations that could be built onto lamp posts, as well as buildings and other structures.

Using communication links known as a ‘Mesh Network,’ the drones will be able to transmit data between each other to send alerts of their environments.

Factors from how clear the weather is to the distance of a customer are hoped to be tackled by these airships, or “airborne fulfilment centres,” which would be able to travel to calmer climates as well as to hotspots where the service is in more greater demand.

The UK laws on drone piloting are continuing to evolve as they become more and more popular, but they currently do not allow for flying over or within 150m of congested areas, or within 50m of any vessel, structure or vehicle not controlled by the pilot.

However, even with these laws the UK is considered much more lenient than many countries. American drone users, for example, required a licence and a special waiver from the Federal Aviation Authority until August last year.

So far the Prime Air sounds very compelling for the 2 customers close enough to an Amazon warehouse to be viable, especially since the service doesn’t cost any more than the customers are already paying, but whether or not your orders are going to be sent to you gift-wrapped from the clouds in the near future is still up in the air.