The invention of internet mobility has significantly changed the shopping pattern. Nowadays, it is possible to compare products and prices at the touch of a button. The consumers are more knowledgeable these days as they are always connected through their mobility devices. Due to this, there has been an increase in the expectations related to shopping choices, product availability and consumer experience. A survey was conducted recently which showed that 73% of the consumers believed they were more informed than the salesman in the stores.
That is why, most of the customers expect the salesperson to be well informed about the products. As per the survey conducted by Deloitte, 65% of retailers barely meet the expectations of the consumer’s in-store experience.
Since salesperson represents the brand, they are the face of an organization. So, the organization should empower them and teach how to increase sales. If the salesperson is unable to deliver ultimate personalized experience to the consumer then it will harm the brand, sales and push the customers towards its competitors.
In order to empower the salesperson, the necessary information about a product needs to be defined and acquired. It is essential that this information is updated in real time. This will help a salesperson to engage with customers and keep them updated about the product offerings. It is also beneficial to cross sell or up sell a product and increase its sales revenues. Since the customers are kept well informed about the product availability, it helps in preventing any potential sales loss because of unavailability of options.
It is my belief that Tablet Commerce or Touch Commerce is a digital point of sale which enables the salesman to sell products. This can be done, in store and on foot with greater ease and convenience. Many applications and hardware extensions that accept cards have grown. This has led consumers to enjoy the various features of tablets when they browse and purchase products online. The advanced technology used in tablets has enabled them to become a salesman’s tool for providing users with an enriched store experience to the users. It can be used by street salesman or even franchises who have access to live inventory and need to expand distribution. As a point of sale, payment mechanism on the tablet is becoming quite relevant. The growth in technology and the ever-increasing consumer demand, T-Commerce is a distribution force to believe in.
It is my view that it is necessary to understand the reason for sustaining such a point of sales and the way it would empower a salesperson. Among the innumerable reasons for it, one is the Legacy In-store technologies. Even though these technologies help the salesman to complete the transaction, they are not effective for engaging a customer. As such, it is necessary that the technology should combine (aggregate) and deliver customer information in a timely and easy to use handy format. This should prove beneficial for a salesperson to interactively leverage this information for engaging a consumer.
A major challenge for a salesman comes in the form of brand/product & consumer awareness given in disparate databases across multiple channels & retail systems within the enterprise. In order to make the sale, the salesman needs to identify the potential consumers, their preferences and availability of product options across the retail value chain. It is quite challenging to provide constant assistance to the salespersons who are distributed across diverse geographical areas and speak different languages.
Since empowering salesperson is the only option, it needs to be done in such a way that they are able to engage the customer effectively. If the retailers with brick and mortar stores create the right experience and product mix then they can get incredible advantages. The ability to responsibly and reasonably harness the power of technology helps to understand the customers better and learn about the additional opportunities that can exist.
The selling and buying experience of the salesperson and consumer can be improved by using T-Commerce as an empowerment solution. It is a tablet solution that enables a salesperson to take the order from the customer using a small mobility device. An organization that uses T-Commerce will be able to get their salesperson to engage their new consumers. This will enable them to give seamless Omni-Channel Retail experience to their consumers with the product available in-store or at any other location. On installing stores-sales automation process, the retail organization will be able improve its efficiencies and performances.
T-Commerce ensures that various aspects of the organization functions efficiently and makes them customer centric. These aspects are part of the consumer buying cycle and an organization sales cycle.
T-Commerce proves beneficial in Customer Relationship Management. It identifies a potential customer, understands his preferences based on his earlier purchases, feedbacks and uses data from social media. T-Commerce uses all this information to provide consumers with excellent shopping experience which ensures that they get full satisfaction. It also helps when there is limited inventory at the store by offering an accurate real-time visibility of the entire inventory from the entire supply chain to fulfil the order speedily.
The huge variety of merchandise with different features, price, etc. has made it easier for catalog management which is available on the consumer’s fingertips.
Loyalty signifies that the customer is the brand ambassador for your organization. The promotions are planned by taking into consideration the customer’s preferences and their class (A, B or C). When a potential customer becomes a brand ambassador, it creates more word of mouth thereby resulting in more brand ambassadors.
Payments “Faster Checkout” There are many cash counters introduced by T-Commerce which use swiping device and can be attached to a tablet. The consumer can pay just by swiping the card. It has digital signature functionality which executes the whole transaction process. This method promotes paperless transaction which is faster and efficient.
The e-commerce penetration in India is close to 2% which is still quite less. This could have resulted due to various reasons including lack of awareness, lack of trust, lack of touch and feel. We can remove the trust barrier by using T-Commerce as a franchisee model or mobile POS. Also, using a hybrid model can be used to provide touch and feel experience with easy buying process.
Recently, many large retailers have started using T-Commerce as their new business development method for improving their sales. Some of the large retailers include Big Bazaar Direct where Franchisee book order through a tablet. The order is delivered in 3 to 7 days and Franchisee gets commission on every order. This has helped Big Bazaar to get the customers that they can’t reach physically. It has also helped them to acquire new customers using trusted franchisee network. Another example is Gitanjali which is using both a hybrid model and T-Commerce. They let their franchisee to stock jewellery worth INR 5 lacs which they are allowed to exhibit.
The growth in technology has served as an effective way to sell using T-Commerce. This solution is delivered on a tablet device through salesmen. It has an easy-to-use, elegant and intuitive interface that enables the salesperson to show their expertise to engage customers and close sales. As per a survey conducted recently, almost 60% sales associates feel that they would be able to help customers better if they carry a tablet. Also, around 47% shoppers said they got better experience when associates used technology to sell products. This point of sale solution can prove effective for a salesperson if they get proper training.
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