Give customers a better in person shopping experience with AI

How do you help a customer if you don’t know anything about them? For your average retail company, this is a real obstacle when it comes to fast-tracking the purchasing process. A customer walks through your doors with an intent to buy but the in-person interaction always has to start at square one: an employee asks, “how can I help you?”

On the other hand, your online store – which tracks previous purchases, customer searches and other buying behaviors during a shopping session – doesn’t have to overcome the same hurdles. Having this information available allows customized offers to quickly surface and improve the overall shopping experience.

So why do we allow service satisfaction online to be so high and continue to make the in-person buying process a drag? Because most retailers simply don’t possess the technology to do it any other way. And that’s a big and unnecessary mistake.

Online to Offline Integration

Facial-recognition software is an easy and fast way to bridge the divide between online and offline shopping. By deploying facial-recognition software, you are creating a record of every customer visit. You’re identifying your customers as they walk in the door, just as if they were searching online, and collecting data around their behavior. This information can be later used to better tailor their experience when they return or visit your other stores. At the same time, you are arming your employees with a potential wealth of information to deliver the best possible in-person experience. Information can even be aggregated to help predict what a customer may want on their first visit. Instead of being bombarded with everything your company offers, customers can be shown a menu of items customized for their interests as a more comfortable jumping off point. Customers no longer have to be a strangers. You don’t have to start at square just to provide them with help.

Additionally, by recognizing your customers in-person you can connect the store experience to their online actions. “Facial-recognition software could enable merchants to connect their customers’ online and offline behaviors and structure boundary-free shopping navigation,” Bryan Pearson writes in Forbes. “The shopper can, for example, order her groceries online and the in-store facial-recognition cameras can produce her order as soon as she approaches.”

The shopper doesn’t differentiate between the same products you offer online versus what is in-store, so why wouldn’t their experience be connected in one seamless process? Facial-recognition puts an end to this dilemma.

How Does Face Recognition Software Change Retail Shopping?

Shorten Lines

Customers won’t be scared away from long lines.

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When you’re shopping online, it takes just a few clicks to complete a transaction – saving both the consumer and store time in the process. Facial-recognition software will identify and store customer and payment information and, as CaliBurger is attempting in 2018, soon replace credit card swipes with face-based payments. Customers won’t be scared off from long checkout lines with slow payments. It’s a quick way to cut down on the number of patrons standing in queue.

Reduce Costs

Eliminate need for unnecessary service staff.

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When you cut down service and transaction times, you are freeing up employees to handle more transactions and eliminating the need for unnecessary service staff. In-store efficiency will skyrocket.

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Strengthen Security

Keep out known shoplifters.

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Theft can create huge losses for your business if you’re not careful. The retail industry has attempted a variety of surveillance and security measures, but there was still $48.9 billion in losses in 2016 from retail theft in the US alone. by creating face records and sharing information across stores, you can cut down on theft. Because shoppers are easily identified, your store can be alerted if a known shoplifter attempts to enter one of your stores.

Seamless Online to Offline

The best way to link digital and physical.

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Imagine if every customer that walked into your store from now on had a name tag that showed their online and in-store browsing history, their preferences, and shopping patterns.

Now imagine you had a supercomputer that could analyze those name tags and give each customer exactly what he or she wants– whether it is displayed on a digital screen, sent via text message, or communicated the old fashioned way (by an employee).

That’s the world we are headed to, and it’s possible with face recognition software.

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Faster Throughput

Personalize service while cutting wait time.

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Not only will checking out not take as long, but a database of in-person information will aid employees in recognizing a customer’s unique needs and help them serve these customers immediately. Both sides get what they want in a shorter amount of time, allowing throughput to increase and adding a boost to your bottom line.

Increase Customer Loyalty

Customers receive tailored services.

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And because customers are receiving more tailored experiences and are able to get what they want faster, they will be more likely return to spend more money at your store later. Offering a better, more customized experience offline in 2018 is like being Amazon online in the late 1990s – you’ll be so well-known for innovative customer satisfaction that consumers will be excited to make return visits. That’s the kind of loyalty any retailer should strive to achieve.

 

Gain a Competitive Advantage with Greater Convenience

The start-to-finish convenience of a faster, safer and smoother shopping experience provides ambitious retailers with an immediate competitive edge and quickly boosts customer satisfaction. Connecting the in-store and online experiences not only creates more loyalty from your customers, but by increasing convenience you’ll also allow your employees to have better daily interactions and be more effective in their roles. You’re creating a unique atmosphere that can’t be replicated online, provides an enriching experience and a reason for an in-person visit and keeps your business at the vanguard when it comes to consumer choice.

Facial-recognition won’t change the retail industry. It will revolutionize it.

There’s no doubt the in-person shopping experience still can’t be beat . Being able to see products in front of you and even touch merchandise, smell food or see how an item looks on your generates greater confidence in a purchase. Your customers continue to value and expect it as an option. And as you collect, store and surface data on each customer in real time to improve the in-store experience, you’re continue to optimize this essential business channel.

Because facial-recognition software is the fastest, easiest and most effective way for any retail business to boost sales and customer satisfaction, adoption of the technology is inevitable. However, the speed of adopting this revolutionizing technology will come down to individual decisions. The top retailers will earn the quick edge on their competition by offering their customers a better experience faster – an encounter much like the ones they’ve come to expect online.

Are you ready to get started making your business better?