As shoppers return to brick and mortar stores in their drovers, they crave the in-store experience.  Retailers who want to set themselves apart are integrating more human and personal touchpoints into the shopping experience, increasing engagement, loyalty and sales.

  • iVend Mobile POS

Mobile POS in retail engages and delights shoppers.

Talk to iVend about mPOS for your stores.

When the pandemic started, and online shopping grew exponentially, many analysts saw it as a permanent shift in the shopping landscape, one from which brick and mortar shopping would never really recover. Yet in fact, the backlash to lockdown is that many of the consumers who were forced online are now desperate to get back to human-based and personal shopping.

When the National Retail Federation surveyed consumers, 45%* of respondents said they preferred in-store shopping, compared to just 28% who prefer online.

During the 2022 holiday season, 74% of shoppers visited a shopping centre, up from 70%** in 2021, which translated to 39% of spend being in brick and mortar stores, up from 34% in 2021.

But this isn’t simply a return to 2019 – the post-pandemic shoppers of 2023 have higher expectations and demands. A recent study of what shoppers want from the instore experience+ concluded that ‘expectations of the face-to-face experience have been raised over several years in which customers have been pushed further online’.

Retailers have to find a way to make the shopping experience more human, engaging and personalised and many are turning to the smart use of retail technology, specifically mobile point of sale, or mPOS.

Mobile POS allows store associates to get alongside customers as they are making their buying decisions. It offers a wide range of customer-focussed services: for example:

  • Locate items – the associate can use the mPOS to see which items the shopper has browsed, or reserved, online, and help them locate the item in the store.

  • Personalised suggestions – based on browsing history or discussion with the shopper, the associate can use the mobile POS to help them suggest items.

  • Order out of stock items – if the shopper cannot find the item/size/colour they want, the associate can use the mobile POS to reserve the item at another store, or to order it for delivery.

  • Endless aisle – if the shopper cannot see the item they want, the associate can show them the full range on the mobile POS screen, and place an order.

  • Complementary items – once the shopper has chosen an item, the associate can use the mPOS to show them accessories or matching items in a set.

  • Offers and promotions – the associate can ensure that the shopper doesn’t miss a promotion, by using the mPOS to access all current offers.

  • Checkout – the shopper can avoid queues at the fixed POS, by completing the contactless payments at the mPOS.

The use of mPOS to deliver all the above functions elevates the customer experience, and brings back the human touch in shopping.

For the retailer, there are multiple benefits in using mPOS to engage with the customer on the shop floor:

  • Customer retention – the better their experience, the more likely a customer is to return to the store. Using mobile POS engages shoppers, and sets a retailer apart from the competition.

  • Save the sale – retailers who don’t engage with shoppers during their browsing and decision-making risk losing the sale if the shopper cannot find what they want. mPOS offers the opportunity to save the sale and increase revenue.

  • Increase basket size – as well as saving the original sale, engaging with the customer using mPOS in the store gives the opportunity to cross sell up sell, increasing basket size.

  • Queue busting – by serving customers in the aisle, queues are reduced for those customers who do choose to use the checkout, enhancing their experience too.

  • Utilise staff skills – store associates want to spend their time helping customers. When staff have mobile POS to engage with shoppers, their morale is increased because they’re doing what they do best.

Mobile POS in retail plays a key part in a strategy to engage customers and bring back the human touch to the shopping experience. An easy to use mPOS, with access to the store loyalty program, inventory visibility, customer details and contactless payments helps retailers elevate their brand, increase sales and ensure they have delighted customers.

What are the things to look for in a mobile point of sale device?

It must be lightweight and easy to hold – a carrying strap or handle can be very useful. Store staff will be using it potentially for a whole shift, and you want to avoid strains and fatigue. The screen must be easy to read, especially if the store has bright light.  It’s also got to be robust enough for a store environment, where it might get dropped or knocked. Finally, think about whetherit needs any accessories, such as card readers or receipt printers.

What software do I need on an mPOS?

The mobile POS needs to be able to support range customer services, so it’s essential that the associate has access to all the systems they need. This could include inventory checking, managing returns, your loyalty program, the ability to show the customer the full ‘endless aisle’ range, check status of orders made online, ordering goods for delivery,  and of course checkout.

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