IOT analytics fuel the brick and mortar retail revolution

Monday, November 16, 2015

Brick and mortar retailers are in a life struggle with online marketplaces. Brick and mortar retailers operate with the added expense of maintaining a physical facility, keeping inventory on hand and hiring service staff to support customers.

Savvy retailers are continuously seeking out new information about their customers; how they browse the store, what they buy, when they buy it, and which marketing “levers” are responsible for those sales. Some are even turning to technologies as elaborate as creating virtual store shelves and studying shoppers’ eye movements.

IoT analytics are right in the thick of these activities. In stores that have deployed beacon technologies, IoT analytics helps retailers conduct dwell analyses; i.e., how shoppers browse the stores; what aisles they linger in versus what aisles they breeze through. This allows them to adjust store layouts. planograms and assortments to optimize sales.

ANALYTICS also enable retailers to study the effectiveness of promotions. With this information, they can adjust the specifics of promotional offers; e.g., two-for-ones versus cents- or dollars-off. They can also adjust which shoppers they target and the frequency of promotions. Predictive analytics enable retailers to gauge the effectiveness of these promotions and ensure there is adequate inventory on hand to meet predicted demand. Analytics are helping retailers create offers based on shoppers’ purchasing patterns. In addition to understanding that shoppers that buy pasta are likely to buy sauce, IoT analytics would reveal, for example, that these shoppers are also more likely to buy seemingly unrelated products, such as crackers. These propensities are often aligned with targeted offers delivered straight to customer mobile phones to help both parties achieve the ideal mix of price and value.

Ecommerce has completely changed the face of retail, but brick and mortar stores are fighting back and creating a revolution of their own. IoT analytics are critical giving retailers the insights they need to win.