Today kicks off The NRF 103rd Annual Convention & EXPO at the Javits Convention Center in New York City and more than 30,000 retail professionals from around the world are expected to attend. I also look forward to attending the conference tomorrow to learn the trends and to see firsthand the technologies that will shape customer experience in retail this year. Senior Writer Cynthia Clark is there today and will share her findings in 1to1 Media's blog on Thursday.
What I've noticed from reports released today from the show is that 2014 will see mobile really shape the customer experience and used as a tool to bridge physical and digital commerce. Here are some of the announcements I've received this morning:
- SAP's new Shopper Experience, retailers can offer consumers the ability to create collaborative shopping lists, redeem unique offers specific to a particular store, and manage loyalty accounts. For consumers, the app enables shoppers to self-scan merchandise and pay, as well as share offers with friends on Facebook -- all from their mobile device while shopping in the store. After linking a loyalty account, consumers are recognized and can review points, status levels, and upcoming rewards. They can plan and easily collaborate with family members on shopping lists and locate the nearest store. Once they check into the store, shoppers receive personalized, local offers that they can share with friends. While shopping, consumers can scan items to research product details and add items to their mobile shopping cart. Consumers can also instantly transfer their cart to the point of sale and avoid the check-out line by paying directly from their mobile device.
- hybris software announced a partnership with OneView Commerce to offer a mobile solution that merges the digital and physical experiences in store. The solution is integrated with hybris' Commerce Suite and Product Content Management to deliver a single source of commerce across the brand. Through the commerce platform, store associates gain instant insight into detailed product information and customer preferences, support for standalone and shared baskets, and checkout across online and in-store shopping.
- Predictix and 360pi have partnered to bring together two providers of cloud-based, analytic solutions for retail. Predictix is incorporating 360pi's price intelligence data to increase the value of its retail solutions, used by retailers to forecast base-level and promotional demand to support better decision-making in merchandising, planning, and supply chain. With the continued rise of online shopping and consumer price transparency, developing effective pricing and demand management strategies is a strategic priority for retailers.
- ThoughtWorks, a provider of retail technology solutions and customer experience consulting, have partnered with Natural Markets Food Group to develop a solution architecture that could support multiple customer end-point experiences within its Food Service and Retail Food establishment. An emphasis on a mobile strategy combined with a focus on customer experience resulted in various in-store services such as mobile ordering and payment capabilities and consolidated grocery and restaurant ordering systems. The same POS solution is used in both the restaurant and grocery portions of the location.
- Punchcard and DigbyÂ® announced that Punchcard, a mobile shopping application that allows customers to earn personalized rewards while they shop, has implemented and is currently using Digby's Localpoint platform to power Punchcard's location-based marketing capabilities. With Localpoint, Punchcard engages shoppers as they enter sponsored locations, driving traffic to nearby retail partner stores with personalized offers based on shopping history and current location. By adding Localpoint's location-based marketing capabilities to Punchcard's rich purchase history, Punchcard can utilize shoppers' real-time behavior as they approach malls or other shopping locations in order to send tailored, timely incentives encouraging the shopper to visit nearby retail partner stores. Punchcard is also using Localpoint Analytics to enable marketers to complete the marketing funnel from product awareness to purchase by tracking shopper visits and other key behavioral statistics at partner store locations.
- Direct Source is collaborating with GPShopper, a mobile solutions company, to help retailers implement the latest in Bluetooth Low Energy beacon technology. These beacons are small wireless sensors placed within a physical structure such as a retail store. They enable retail commerce and marketing systems to push messaging to mobile devices based on hyper-local geographic locations and also help retailers track shopper movements within a store.
Are you at NRF's Big Show? What trends are you seeing that will help improve the customer experience in retail in 2014?