After the challenges of the last few years, we’re all searching for experiences. In retail, creating a better experience for your customers is key to success. But what if the best retail experiences were those that didn’t require any interaction at all?
When we think of customer experience, images of cheery sales associates, well-stocked shelves, and helpful customer service come to mind. But the future of customer experience may lie in a completely different direction: unattended retail.
Unattended retail is a form of retail where customers can shop without the assistance of a sales associate. By offering your clientele a frictionless or automated retail experience, you can create a more convenient and enjoyable experience for them.
Here are three ways unattended retail can create a better customer experience:
1. Increased convenience
The most obvious benefit of unattended retail is that it’s more convenient for customers. They can shop on their own schedule, without having to wait in line or contend with crowds.
We all hate waiting in line. When you give your customers the option to browse, shop and pay from a standalone kiosk, they can avoid lines altogether. This increases satisfaction and makes it more likely that they’ll come back again.
Unattended retail terminals have been gaining momentum in the food and beverage space for years. Most big-name chain fast-food restaurants offer some type of self-service option to their customers. But any industry can benefit from this type of technology, from grocery stores to fashion retailers.
Imagine walking into your favorite store in search of a new sweater for the fall. Instead of scouring the shelves for your size, or a style that suits your taste, you can hop on a kiosk and see in-depth product information, including customer reviews. Once you’ve found the perfect sweater, you can pay right then and there without ever having to wait in line.
By eliminating the challenges often associated with traditional retail experiences, unattended retail can make shopping more convenient for customers.
2. Improved customer service
Unattended retail doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice quality customer service. In fact, many times, it can improve the level of customer service you’re able to provide.
When customers are able to shop on their own, it frees your staff up to provide more personalized assistance. They can help customers who are having trouble with the kiosks or provide one-on-one styling advice.
By offering a mix of self-service and traditional customer service, you can give your customers the best of both worlds. They can shop on their own or get the assistance they need when they need it.
Often, store staff is too busy at the registers to focus on the customers walking throughout the store. If someone can’t find what they are looking for — or an associate to help them — they will leave and order online. With unattended retail, your team can provide a better in-store experience by interacting with shoppers and fulfilling their needs.
3. Increased sales
When customers have a better experience, they’re more likely to buy something. In fact, according to studies, 86% of consumers say they would pay more for a better customer experience.
Retailers lose out on sales when lines are too long, items aren’t readily available, or the store is out of stock. Customers get frustrated and leave without making a purchase. But with unattended retail, you can increase your chances of making a sale.
Linking your in-store shopping experience with your online presence can also help increase sales. If a customer can’t find what they’re looking for in the store, they can order it online right then and there. This allows you to capitalize on impulse purchases and turn one-time shoppers into lifelong customers.
Getting the Most Out of Your Retail Locations
Unattended retail isn’t an alternative to traditional shopping — it’s an evolution.
When most retailers hear “self-service,” they immediately think about the lack of human interaction. But that’s not what unattended retail is all about.
It’s about giving your customers the freedom to shop on their own terms, without sacrificing quality customer service. It’s about increasing sales and improving the overall shopping experience.
By adding self-service kiosks to your brick-and-mortar store you aren’t eliminating personalization, you are increasing it. With more staff available to provide one-on-one assistance, you can create a shopping experience that is tailored to each customer’s needs.
Unattended retail is the future of shopping — and it’s one trend you don’t want to miss out on.
Want to get started with unattended retail but need a little help? Our team can walk you through your options and set you up for success.