Retailers are experimenting with a myriad of ways to respond to new shopper expectations, bridge digital and physical shopping experiences and in the process, trying different ways to transform the retail experience in order to boost sales. One of the most recent examples is that of Shoppers Stop, one of India’s leading fashion retailer. The $290 million retailer recently embarked on a digital transformation journey to deliver enhanced, personalized and engaging in-store experience for customers.
The K Raheja Corp Group, started in 1991 with its first store in Andheri, Mumbai, is aiming to accelerate the digitization of its stores in-line with its omni-channel strategy through which the company looks at garnering 20 percent digitally-influenced sales by 2020. As a result, it has collaborated with Cisco to implement the Connected Mobile Experience (CMX) capabilities across 80 stores in India in the next six months.
At present however, Shoppers Stop is piloting the CMX capabilities in select stores. This is integrated with Cisco Wireless Solution for enhanced, personalized experiences for shoppers, informed Anil Shankar, Customer Care Associate & Vice President – IT, Shoppers Stop Ltd.
The pilot initiatives are already showing results. Unlike in the past, Shoppers Stop has gained a single view dashboard of connected customers in the store, insights into customer behavior analytics, location based services and analytics for effective in-store marketing and in-store tracking, among others.
With over 4.6 million First Citizen loyalty program members and one million Shoppers Stop Mobile app downloads, the retailer believes it can use anonymized aggregate data to provide mapping, directions and personalized in-store promotions to customers in the coming months.
Shankar informed, “A pivotal element of our omni-channel strategy is to digitally transform our physical stores to provide a seamless and convenient shopping experience.” He believes that digitization is not about just using the latest technology but about enhancing the customer’s journey, and hence, the Cisco Mobility Solution is helping them enhance customer experience, gather insights into its customer preferences and optimize resources to offer enhanced personalized experiences to customers who shop at their stores.
Undoutedly, Cisco has helped Shoppers Stop to deploy guest Wi-Fi for greater personalization and digital services to help its customers discover the best shopping possibilities within its stores. Shankar informed that the new platform brings the power of Cisco’s Wi-Fi infrastructure and intelligent network capabilities and helped Shoppers Stop better serve its customers by analyzing individual customer experience, behavior and engagement.
Shankar added, the CMX integrated with Cisco Wireless Solution can be delivered either on premises or from the Cloud, and will allow Shoppers Stop to deepen customer loyalty and boost sales through location-based services, targeted advertisements and advanced analytics. Registered devices are automatically recognized at all Shoppers Stop stores, further encouraging Wi-Fi usage with the convenience of not having to log in again.
The solution is also equipped with video analytics feature. The retailer has implemented Cisco SX10 and SX20 HD video endpoints making it easier for Shopper Stop employees to connect, collaborate and make faster decisions and quicker resolutions with colleagues and partners from any location.
According to Shankar, the competition from digital and overall customer experience has increased cost pressure for retailers. However, with new digital possibilities, there are ample ways to decrease costs, among others on the level of digitization and supply chain. The impact and opportunities in areas such as data-driven optimization and marketing, empowerment of staff and new technologies.
As per a Cisco global report, “Reinventing Retail: Cisco Reveals How Stores Can Surge Ahead on the Digital Transformation Journey” there remains a tremendous opportunity, with the potential for retailers to generate more than $506 billion in value that can be achieved through digital transformation.
“Retail is one of the top three industries most vulnerable to digital disruption. In retail, insight is currency and these insights help retailers provide a hyper-relevant customer experience and remain competitive in the digital age. We are excited to collaborate with Shoppers Stop as they digitally transform their business, deliver hyper-relevant customer experiences and enhance workforce efficiency to emerge as the retailers of the future by driving both revenue growth and operational efficiencies,” Dinesh Malkani, President, Cisco India and SAARC said.
Digital disruption means getting business outcomes faster, stated Shankar, who also sees a growing appetite from shoppers to have a personalized experience. “The idea is to have digital technologies available all over the place, helping the customers to have a relaxed and immersive shopping experience all through the journey,” he summed up.
[The writer was present at the Cisco India Summit 2017 in Delhi/Gurgaon]