“With the growth of online shopping, how can digital signage evolve in customer- facing environments and impact the shopping experience?”
The digital signage evolution in customer-facing environments has already started. The industry just needs to get better at it (and it will … quickly).
The biggest change will be technology and content that would allow the customer to quickly and easily make the transition from casual observer to buyer. A consumer will soon expect to be able to purchase anything they see on a screen at any given moment.
For example, a customer sees content from The GAP and is interested in buying one or all of the items worn by the model in the spot. The customer only needs to hold their mobile device up, and the mobile shopping experience begins with a direct link to the items and an accompanying discount code.
We already have screens and content that bring this experience to the consumer. Most of those I have seen require the customer to possess an app to do so. With the rapid advance of image recognition in devices, and the resurgence of QR codes as a means of bypassing the requirement for an app, this will soon be a thing of the past.
Actually, I was a QR hater until I realized it could be the bridge for the shopping experience in DOOH environments. This turns any screen in any location (airport, transit shelter, store window, etc.) into a potential and immediate transactional experience without the need for an app. If image capture can open the retailer’s app and take them directly to the item, then the situation is even better.
The development of AR experiences that work with the content should also accelerate and enhance the shopping experience. Features and benefits, additional visual information or a chance to explore further all provide a unique purchase opportunity where there may not have been one before.
I think what I am most excited for is all of the data that can be captured through this — data that not only verifies the efficacy of the content, but can be used to shape future experiences to hone verifiable results.
Now, if we could only come up with a gift idea generator that will suggest gifts as I hold my iPhone up to my friends and family….