It’s no secret that major retailers are scrambling to maintain their dominion as tech-savvy millennials increasingly opt for spending their hard-earned money on intangibles that create memories rather than forking it over for widgets on shelves. Indeed, consumerism as we’ve come to know it is changing across the board, and in many ways, the retail sector is at the epicenter of this dynamic. To avoid losing market share and closing, many large retailers are focusing on the customer experience by offering in-store e-commerce options or personalized/assisted selling. Digital Signage Connection caught up with Elo’s Director of North American Sales Luke Wilwerding for a discussion on this very topic, and to find out how Elo’s foray into the “endless aisle” and interactive touchscreen experiences are addressing the paradigm shift head on with two retail case studies in point: New York & Company and Monica Rich Kosann.
“Elo is unique in the digital signage arena because we are the pioneers for touch-related interaction with consumers,” said Wilwerding. “Modern cell phones have trained the world on touchscreens, but Elo picked up the torch from there. We’re aiming to achieve something similar with our endless aisle solutions, and I think these two case studies speak for themselves.”
New York & Company, the national women’s apparel retailer, recently piloted self-service touchscreen kiosks in select store locations. This addition created an endless aisle by allowing customers to shop the store’s full stock in-store, ship to home and make secure payments using EMV card readers, thereby decreasing the risk of losing a potential sale due to an out-of-stock or unavailable item.
Monica Rich Kosann, a NYC-based luxury retail jeweler, is a bit of a different spin since they only sold their products in high-end department stores prior to this deployment. After opening its first retail location at The Shops at Columbus Circle, Monica Rich Kosann wanted to create a modern “white-glove” shopping experience and employed touchscreens to allow for assisted, personalized selling.
“Monica Rich Kosann is known for their customized lockets, and their goal was capture their full e-commerce offering while in store,” said Wilwerding. “The touchscreen offers the full catalog for shipping to home. For both deployments, they use Elo’s I-Series display with a floor stand and the EloView platform, which includes security updates, OS updates, management of hardware and automatic provisioning. Every retailer should really be reaching out to connect these two channels of in-store and online.”
Both retailers used Elo’s 22-inch I-series Android platform, which is the sweet spot in terms of size, according to Wilwerding. As a platform, it extends from 10 inches to 70 inches, with most having the ability to scale the app automatically around the size of the display. As one could probably guess, 70-inch displays are about spectacle, and 10-inch touchscreens are about making the in-store experience intimate and private. In other words, modern shoppers demand the full gamut of personalized possibilities.
“Creating a personalized experience is increasingly key,” Wilwerding concluded. “You could say that millennials are actually quite loyal shoppers if you give them the right experience and the means to form a relationship with a brand. Brick and mortar will inevitably evolve into showrooms, but that customer relationship has to extend beyond the physical store.”