Retailers have been working to achieve an improved unattended shopping experience.
Achieving an improved customer experience is leading stores to embrace retail mobile payments. Retailers are attempting to improve the customer experience through the use of technology. The hope is to offer greater conveniences without having to hire more staff.
A great deal of this focus has been placed on the integration of a frictionless point-of-sale payment.
The interest in retail mobile payments made the topic one of the best attended informational sessions at the Las Vegas Convention Center for the National Automatic Merchandising Association. The educational session focused on how mobile payments and other payment technology innovations affect customer expectations.
The speakers discussed the way mobile technology is changing customer expectations regarding what they want to experience as they shop. PayRange CEO and founder, Paresh Patel spoke of the “customer journey.” Patel’s company is a self-service mobile solutions equipment provider. He described the journey as every factor affecting the customer ahead of, during and following a purchase.
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Convenience services have become integral to the customer journey, boosting retail mobile payments.
Patel explained that if the primary focus is on cost and sales, it’s easy to forget about the customer journey. Blockbuster was used as a prime example of that case. They continued to assume that visiting their stores would be worth the customer inconvenience when they had Redbox and Netflix as more convenient alternatives. DVD customers could view the movies, documentaries and shows they wanted without leaving their homes. Blockbuster didn’t keep up.
The educational session broke down convenience services along a customer’s journey into three different phases. The phases are: pre-purchase, purchase and post-purchase, according to Patel. Therefore, his recommendation was for businesses to look at their activities in the way they affect the customer in those three areas. This includes everything from relevant marketing, customization, route management, payment and post-service customer contact.
With changing technology, retail mobile payments and other conveniences can be offered through the devices consumers use the most. Patel explained that using the right technology is one of the best ways to communicate with the customer, particularly in the case of millennials.