The innovative potential of retail in the digital age is staggering. With increasing customer expectations, fast changing consumer habits, complex logistic chains and human error are some factors holding retailers back from fully realizing their business opportunities. But what can IoT technology offer retailers? What use case opportunities are there in retail?
This article provides answers to these questions.
1. Payment processing terminals
A recent report found that since the COVID pandemic, cashless payments have more than doubled in the US, Australia, Canada, and the UK. This growing reliance upon card and contactless payment has put payment processors at the forefront of retail. Analysts estimate the payment processing market will reach USD$147 billion by 2027.
Payment processing terminals need to provide fast but secure service. Unstable connectivity can cause transaction failures, countless frustrations and loss of sales. End-to-end encryption technology and global coverage ensures your devices connect to the best signals wherever you are with the highest levels of security.
2. Automated product distribution systems
Vending machines used to be more common in places like airports, gas stations and industrial sites. Today, they can be found in most areas with high foot traffic, translating to significant market growth. Retailers are also launching innovative variants with novel products, integrated touch-screen panels and cashless payment functionalities.
With a single pane of glass management platform, retailers have 24/7 access to all vending machines. They can adjust delivery schedules based on sales, or coordinate maintenance when machines experience tempering or a malfunction. This simultaneously reduces unnecessary deployment of manpower and prevents costly equipment failure.
3. In-store customer analytics
Despite challenges arising from COVID, in 2021, brick and mortar store openings top store closures for the first time in five years. There are distinct differences between online and offline shopping. Moving linearly from move from webpage to webpage is vastly different from physical stores where movement and behavior is dynamic.
Gathering real-time data on in-store behavior (I.e., purchase and friction points, path trajectory, engagement time) can better inform company sales and marketing initiatives. Studies have also shown that, companies making intensive use of customer analytics are 2.6 times more likely to have a significantly higher ROI and three times as likely to generate above-average revenue growth than competitors.
4. Supply & inventory management
One of the first applications of IoT in retail remains a top use case across the industry. Retailers use IoT applications and devices in conjunction with other technology (I.e., RFID) to simplify supply chains and track product data. This includes location, stock, quantity, and other real-time insights that allow them to manage resources more efficiently.
These are just some of the ways connected devices can improve various retail processes. The applications are still growing as businesses discover new ways to enhance customer experiences and lower operating costs.
If you are developing IoT solutions in this space and meet with unique connectivity challenges, reach out to one of our experts today and request a trial of our SIMs.