The Internet of Things (IoT) is ubiquitous computing, data storage and real-time analytics changing is everything, yes, everything around us- communications, work, business and life. In other words Internet of Things (IoT) can be described as the world where real, virtual and digital are converging to create a smart environment with intelligence. In such an environment, IoT enables everything to be connected and networked anytime, anywhere. This is the new revolution of Internet and the connected objects are smart, intelligent, self-recognizable and responsive.
Impact on Retail
IoT is emerging fast with its four basic usage models that are- Manage, Monetize, Operate and Extend. These are the four usage models that are emerging in the modern business scenario and every business needs these models to run a successful business.
Internet of Things (IoT) and Retail Business
The Internet of Things creates opportunities to achieve efficient IoT solutions in the retail sector by addressing the right person, right content at the right time and right place. IoT is a resource for customers to get empowered and for retailers to have the opportunity to engage with every customer section. In short, IoT enables real-time forecast for business.
Intel powers the immersive retail experiences that help shoppers explore, dream, and connect with the brands they love. From real-time inventory management to customer engagement and personalized marketing, Intel’s retail solutions help drive profits and customer loyalty. In-store, online, and on mobile, Intel is inspiring the richer, more captivating shopping engagements that today’s connected consumers seek and competitive retailers deliver. –Intel.com
Ways Retailers can benefit from Internet of Things
“Vision without action is a daydream… Action without vision is a nightmare”
The Internet of Things (IoT), then, is powerful — it improves you to run life and business smoothly with useful insights. Following are the top ways to enhance your retail business and customer experience by delivering products that your customers want:
1. Inventory management: You track your inventory from production to warehouse and warehouse to store shelves. And you can do this by deploying sensors, such as Beacons and NFC tags. In case of retail business it is recommended that radio frequency tags are more useful to track and manage your inventory. All the data generated can be connected to real-time event processing solution. This results into greater inventory accuracy with better use of their working capital.
Walmart was the first adopter of IoT for inventory management to optimize its warehouse and supply chain operations; others are now following the same to manage their inventory in a better way.
2. Fleet management: It’s the GPS devices that have been used for tracking delivery trucks, but now IoT has taken this to a whole new level by defining rules- the delivery route, transporting speed, storage temperature adjustment and alerts rising. This results in lowering expenditure like fuel costs, reduced theft and loss risks and accurate lead time etc. You can track your products in real-time.
3. Maintenance: In retail business, products that require service or post-sale service can be tracked using IoT resulting real-time data processing between sensors, products and retailers. In this way information gets back to the retailers and action being taken to eradicate the problem. In this way with the help of predictive analysis based on the data retailers with the help of IoT resolve any problem and gives out solution.
4. Real-time promotions: Mobile devices and Mobile handset are the key part of IoT. Nowadays, retailers are using them to send real-time promotions to the customers. These messages are sent based on variables like customer’s shopping history, locations, personal choice, traffic, real-time weather and particular events etc. Retailers can use this as a marketing weapon and present offers to customers as per their preferences, taste and locations.
For example, Omni-channel retailers use this feature to send promotions for products in the physical store that the customer has already researched on their laptop or mobile device.
Meanwhile, American Express has partnered with several retailers to offer real-time promotions based on a customer’s location and credit card activity.
5. Next-gen vending machines: Retail business can operate and manage next-gen vending machines which enable finding the nearest machine that has products a customer wants. Based on the customer behavior you can present a lucrative deal to convert prospects into customers. That’s how IoT is going to change shopping experience for both- customers and retailers.
In this way, by analyzing your customer history you can offer the exact product they searching for, hence with the help of connected and real-time data and predictive analytics IoT is going to change everything. Retailers are adopting fast the latest IoT technology to forecast business prediction. Make sure you beat the competition and stay ahead of all.