Retailers set to use mobile technology in pre-Christmas sales battle

Traditional high street shops are preparing to combat online retailers by using new mobile technology in the lead-up to ‘Black Friday’ (29 November).

This Christmas high street retailers will use mobile technology to monitor customer behaviour and “steal a march on their online rivals”, according to international commerce specialist Powa Technologies.

The news comes following industry predictions that online retailers are set to take £10bn in the run-up to Christmas for the first time. As a result, high street retailers will have to find new and exciting ways to fight and protect their market share.

Powa has also claimed that this year will be a “make or break” year for many high street retailers, as more of the public’s spending power moves to the internet. “Online purchases [are] predicted to rise sharply compared to the same period last year, however, and those buying online after browsing [are set to] reach a five-year high of 5% in the run-up to this Christmas,” it said.

“The shopping days from ‘Black Friday’ up to 24 December are the most important of the year for retailers, and one thing is clear, they need to use every available method at their disposal to increase revenue.”

According to Powa, high street stores using mobile tracking technologies can increase their levels of consumer engagement, as well as improve customer shopping experiences. However, the company also says that the ability to track customers on their mobile phones, while they are shopping on the high street, has other advantages too.

“It’s all about offering the consumer something extra. Geolocation is clearly part of that picture and something that a physical retailer can leverage that an online retailer cannot. If a customer transmits their location to a retailer, the retailer could let them know that they have a shop 300 yards away for example. The store could then send a message telling the customer to drop by in half an hour when their goods will be ready to collect. Amazon cannot do that,” said Dan Wagner, retail technology entrepreneur and CEO of mobile payment specialist Powa Technologies.

Wagner added that it was now up to shops to seek out and create innovative ways to engage with consumers. “Geolocation, mobile payment and tailoring the experience to the consumer represent some of the ways retail is changing for the better.”


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