In a previous article, I began by discussing how today’s retail store associate just hasn’t been enabled through mobile technology the way some predicted, but through the addition of simple tools, how they can drive meaningful change in the way customers shop and use the physical retail store.
In this post, we’ll continue working with Linda, Store Operations & Communications Manager at a women’s fashion and apparel brand, on how she’s able to dispatch large volumes of content, marketing materials, and training programs, while keeping store associates like Angela, on the selling floor with her customers.
Access data and content from anywhere in the store
Maintain customer engagement
The longer Angela is able to stay engaged with a customer, the odds of her closing a sale increases. So if store associates are forced to leave the selling floor at any time during that engagement, whether it’s to answer policy questions or check inventory, their chances of closing the sale decreases. Store associates have traditionally relied on back-office computers, fax machines, and emails to send and receive documents.
Now, Angela can access, edit, and share documents anywhere in the store and can easily search an entire digital library of files. She becomes the knowledge expert customers expect and can answer any question they might have in real-time, whether it relates to return or exchange policies, product details, or product availability.
Collaborate and share with anyone across the enterprise
Create a community of knowledge experts
Store associates are the single greatest asset you have to drive more sales. They have expansive knowledge around customer preferences, habits, and behaviors, as well as sales best practices and years of expertise. Giving them access to group chat and discussion forums provides a medium in which they can share advice and collaborate on new sales practices. Store associates can foster an open-source community across their peers from one or many stores, as well as with head office.
Angela shares advice in the chat module, on how to properly measure a neck for a dress shirt.
Collaborate in real-time
Angela’s responsibilities extend to remerchandising and updating visual displays. She loves this part of her job, since it gives her a chance to be creative and have a hand in shaping the physical experience of the store. With Box Capture, as well as native Box photo and video capabilities, Angela can take photos, annotate, and collaborate directly in real-time with the merchandising team. She can sync directives directly with Box, then take photos of the displays once she’s finished.
Having visibility into store and planogram conditions is nearly impossible for Linda or the merchandising teams. Unless they visit the stores, they have no idea how displays are being maintained and whether or not products are being replenished within each aisle, bay, or endcap. By removing the dependence of paper-based planograms and using Box to sync digital files, Angela can share the latest store condition reports, while receiving timely best practice examples and directives.
Angela reviews a planogram sent from Linda at head office.
Angela adds comments and receives feedback from Linda.
Ensure corporate and customer data security
Globally set security settings
Linda can set how store associates look at, consume, and share content by creating rules at the global, role, and individual levels. For instance, she can disable the downloading of documents and ensure they are not shared outside the firewall, or control access to a specific group of documents. With Box, there are seven levels of permission settings, which means she’s able to easily work with external ad agencies, vendors, and supply chain partners, then receive notifications in real-time to ensure her projects stay on time and on budget.
How do we get to the “2016 store associate” in 2016?
By deploying a tool that combines data and content from your existing systems or apps, including marketing, IT, and merchandising, into one consolidated app for store associates to access in real-time. One app that ties together important communications, while keeping your store associates focused on building relationships with their customers and converting these into sales.