Next generation one-stop shopping

POOOX (Point of Online Offline Exchange) is the new dimension of omni-channel shopping uniting the in-store world with online commerce. Retailers such as TAO Technical Wear in Germany are reaping the benefits of the new in-store e-commerce software from Pyramid Computer GmbH to maximise the opportunities in this space and deliver a totally new, innovative shopping experience for customers.

Using Nephele, the world's first out-of-the-box software solution designed for polytouch interactive kiosk systems, TAO is no longer limited by the four walls of its brick-and mortar stores. The retailer is able to step outside its traditional value propositions to pursue new customers via virtual store enlargement; meaning it can sell more in less physical space. TAO now only needs to physically stock best-seller or higher-margin items as an extended assortment of merchandise can be browsed online using the polytouch kiosks. The retailer can also add a wide range of additional services to encourage upselling and faster, more convenient check-outs.

For the customer, the shopping experience at TAO is a two way process; they can switch back and forth from online to offline as they wish. It is entirely their choice when and where to buy – this is the next generation of one-stop shopping!

Retailer's new challenge in the 21st century – One-stop shopping

Growth of e-commerce is still happening at an impressive rate as retailers invest in new strategic concepts such as integrated shopping to help boost traditional in-store commerce and add more tools to deliver a more appealing shopping experience. Retailers are able to dramatically extend their virtual floor space by displaying an entire product catalogue while rationalising in-store selection in order to provide customers with a more interactive shopping experience. Also these catalogues are enriched with extensive details of products and their related accessories.

Searching for the right type and combination of products is just a touch away, enabling customers to enjoy the ultimate shopping experience and the satisfaction of a stress-free purchase, as well as choosing home delivery or taking their goods away them. polytouch also allows products to be updated or special sales promotions can be scheduled on the fly from a central location.

Furthermore, it is important to build an in-store experience around the modern, urban lifestyle where time is of the essence. Customers should have the luxury of walking into a store, scanning the QR codes from the shopping list pre-prepared on their smartphone, and walking out of the store with the purchase in a matter of minutes. Forget the in-store and online dichotomy and fuse the customers' shopping experience.

Know what your customers want – TAO's step ahead

In the highly competitive retail market ruled by big players, success will only be achieved through innovative omni-channel strategies, clear defined goals and a targeted product portfolio. At TAO, one of the leading sportswear brands in the field of running, merchandise is distributed through trading partners (shop to shop) as well as online.

To boost awareness, position itself as a pioneering brand, develop its online store and consequently accelerate sales revenue, TAO has decided to expand its business strategy and implement a new additional sales channel. polytouch, the omni-Channel integration platform, was subsequently chosen to bring the online world inside the store and offer added value to customers.

A key objective of TOA's is to create an enhanced service level for customers, particularly as the retail industry has seen a steady decline of staff over the last few years. It is therefore imperative for the retailer that its customers can easily find what they are looking for and that other services such as product comparison, product finder and related accessories are readily accessible – thereby helping to increase customer satisfaction, loyalty and retention.

Next Steps innovation – The fully integrated sales cycle

When considering new technologies and solutions, the end goal is to close the sales cycle and offer customers the option of buying whenever and wherever they want. Additionally, the importance of exceptional service is viewed as essential as the customer not only wants to make a purchase, they want be informed and ensure they receive the best price-performance ratio. Therefore, product comparison and product ratings should be a must have rather than a nice to have.

TAO decided on a two-phase approach to add value to the customer journey in-store. Phase one encompasses integrated regional real-time campaigns. Using historical sales data, bestselling items in a certain region will be advertised at highly frequented shopping times and special promotions will run according to the seasons and weather conditions. For example, waterproof and high visibility clothing as Autumn and Winter set in.

Phase two is scheduled to commence in Q1 of 2015. To boost awareness and bring more traffic to the shops, discount flyers with QR codes will be distributed in high streets near the trading partner stores. Customers will be able to scan the QR codes at the polytouch terminal and receive a 10% discount on their next purchase, for example.

"The Kiosks help to convert every self-service transaction to pure fun. polytouch systems attract customers, they are astoundingly compact in size, and they fit in every store design" says Peter Fricke, Managing Director, TAO – Technical Wear.

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