As I walked around this morning – the start of the second day here at NRF – one trend that popped out at me is connected devices. Whether working with store-assistant enabled selling devices or the point-of-sale system, we’re seeing IoT in the retail environment coming into an integrated ecosystem. Like a well-orchestrated symphony, hand-offs between retailers and consumers become seamless thanks to the connectedness of each device in the chain. In the age of Big Data, this is particularly important; everything working together helps to ensure that retailers have a breadth of actionable information about their customers.
Building on this, we're also seeing an increase in consumer-facing technology, such as communication devices that give sales assistants a step up in their ability to understand the customer’s desires before they even get to the store. It’s no surprise that customers often spend time researching a product before setting foot in the store; by knowing what the customer is looking for ahead of time, sales assistants can focus in on those products that meet the customers’ needs and help ensure the customer is happy and the sale is made.
It’s fascinating to see this trend unfold across the NRF show floor, and there are some very interesting products here. One that stands out, is the use LED lighting and customers’ mobile devices to give highly accurate in-store location services. It's services like this that not only provide great utility for consumers and give them good reason to be using a retailer's app, but also provide really granular data for use in further personalization of experience and re-targeting customers.
I’ll share more as the show progresses. In the meantime, stop by and see Plexure in front of Booth #2803 where we’re demonstrating the convenience store of the future.