In-store WiFi and Click and Collect top most popular retail technologies in 2018
Smart London retailers start to unify online and offline stores, improving customer experience and optimising personalisation
London, 21st November 2018: Over three quarters (77%) of major London retail destinations have embraced click and collect, according to new research from Hitachi Consulting. This popularity was closely followed by in-store Wi-Fi (74%), showing that large brands are seeking to make shopping easier and more flexible for customers. Furthermore, almost two thirds of these stores also offer e-receipts, indicating that brands are also becoming savvier about linking their in-store and online presence.
“One of the greatest challenges for retailers today is understanding that the person who just walked into your store is also the person who clicked on a winter coat online last night,” commented Pierson Broome, Retail specialist at Hitachi Consulting. “Retailers are becoming smarter about offering technologies that can make life easier for consumers, but have cleverly adopted measures that also link a person in a shop to an online action, like e-receipts and click and collect. This helps stores to offer an ever-increasingly personal shopping experience without slowing down or annoying shoppers.”
The study of retail outlets included fashion, lifestyle, recreation, food and drink and health brands, collecting over 400 data points in the pre-Christmas period. In addition to the technologies favoured by large retail brands, it also revealed growing experimentation in the industry. For example, 22% are now offering the option to purchase through social media, and 13% are offering discounts based on prior purchase history, showing a steadily growing confidence in new technologies like machine learning.
“While we have seen some technologies boom across the board, others have stayed firmly in certain sectors,” continued Broome. “mPOS, for example, where retailers can take payments anywhere in the store on a tablet device, is generally practiced by a select few but has not seen universal adoption. Similarly, innovations that offer minimal benefits or are technically very complex to implement – like same-day or locker delivery – have also seen lower adoption than developments with a clearer ROI and a simpler path to implementation. I believe that 2018 was the year where retailers put their ‘foundation’ technologies in place, and with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) firmly in place, 2019 will be the year of even greater transformation.”
About Hitachi Consulting
Hitachi Consulting is the digital solutions and professional services organisation within Hitachi Ltd., a global technology and social innovation leader. Hitachi Consulting is a catalyst for positive business change, propelling organisations to drive disruptive innovation and to accelerate digital transformation. We help organisations leverage data as a strategic asset to innovate faster, develop new revenue streams, and respond to global dynamics with insight and agility. We collaborate with clients to create solutions that help maximise operational efficiency and deliver measurable, sustainable business results. Visit us at www.hitachiconsulting.com.
About Hitachi, Ltd
Hitachi, Ltd. (TSE: 6501), headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, delivers innovations that answer society’s challenges with our talented team and proven experience in global markets. The company’s consolidated revenues for fiscal 2016 (ended March 31, 2017) totalled 10,034 billion yen ($89.3 billion). Hitachi is focusing more than ever on the Social Innovation Business, which includes power & infrastructure systems, information & telecommunication systems, construction machinery, high functional materials & components, automotive systems, healthcare and others. For more information on Hitachi, please visit the company’s website at http://www.hitachi.com.