In Bricks Vs Clicks, Re­tail­ers Turn to Tech Star­tups for Help

A bunch of tech star­tups is help­ing re­tail­ers lure cus­tomers to stores

The Economic Times - - Disruption: - Shadma.Shaikh @times­group.com

Bengaluru: You walk down a shop­ping street and your smart­phone starts to buzz — the Zara top you looked up the other day is avail­able in your size and black colour with a 10% dis­count, at a store 500 me­tres away. Sounds like a shop­ping ge­nie com­ing alive? It’s your smart­phone do­ing the trick, help­ing brick-and-mor­tar re­tail­ers know your shop­ping pat­tern and pref­er­ences.

A bunch of tech star­tups are help­ing them do it.

Sens­ing the need for tech­nol­ogy in­te­gra­tion to stand a chance in com­pet­ing with their on­line coun­ter­parts, off­line re­tail stores are in­creas­ingly turn­ing to part­ner with star­tups who pro­vide such so­lu­tions.

In­ter­ac­tionOne pro­vides what it calls a prox­im­ity dis­cov­ery plat­form that en­ables stores to talk to smart­phones via bea­cons. A small piece of hard­ware that uses Blue­tooth con­nec­tion to com­mu­ni­cate with dig­i­tal de­vices, bea­con helps in pres­ence de­tec­tion and pushes mes­sages to user’s smart­phone through an app. The app, called Mob­merry uses ma­chine-learn­ing al­go­rithm to grasp user’s likes and pref­er­ences over time through their brow- sing pat­terns — while also let­ting them add prod­ucts to their wish list. Add lo­ca­tion track­ing to it and the next time the user is near a store, a no­ti­fi­ca­tion on their phone pops up. Once the user en­ters the store, bea­cons mounted in the store de­tect the user’s pre- sence and cred­its the user with walk-in points.

“Re­tail­ers have started to see trac­tion and are more will­ing to in­te­grate tech­nol­ogy in their stores,” said Kr­ishna Prasad, co­founder of In­ter­ac­tionOne that pi­loted its first project based on IoT in Bengaluru on a high-end shop­ping street with 80 show­rooms.

For re­tail­ers, bea­cons inside the store also track the time that con­sumers spend look­ing at prod­ucts, thus defin­ing hot zones in the store. “If in­te­grated with point of sale, it can also help mer­chants un­der­stand their cus­tomer’s pocket size, how fre­quently they shop and their buy­ing pat­terns,” Prasad said. The com­pany is now in­te­grat­ing its so­lu­tion across the city and is in talks with 400 mer­chants to sign up with them in the next three months.

In the battle of bricks ver­sus clicks, the ecom­merce play­ers ha-

KR­ISHNA PRASAD Co­founder, Re­tail­ers have started to see trac­tion and are more will­ing to in­te­grate tech­nol­ogy in their stores. If in­te­grated with point of sale, it can also help mer­chants un­der­stand their cus­tomer’s pocket size, how fre­quently they shop and buy­ing pat­terns

ve al­ways had an edge with con­sumer-fac­ing tech­nol­ogy driv­ing traf­fic to their web­sites. Brickand-mor­tar re­tail­ers are now en­ter­ing the tech space to woo con­sumers back to the show­rooms.

Ex­pe­ri­en­tial De­sign Lab is build­ing in­ter­ac­tive so­lu­tions for brand en­gage­ment. Its so­lu­tion for re­tail stores in­cludes an in­ter­ac­tive dig­i­tal ex­pe­ri­ence for a user who walks into their store.

The startup has also de­vel­oped so­lu­tions for Asian Paints where con­sumers can walk into a store, select fin­ishes and view them real-time on their home walls through vir­tu­al­i­sa­tion.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.