Where it used to be that as a shopper you would just show up in the store and browse the aisles looking for what you needed and what interested you, today’s in-store experience has changed dramatically thanks to the many tech tools that consumers have at their fingertips. According to statistics, 77% of Americans own a smartphone, which has prompted businesses and retailers to look at the in-store experience in a whole new light. Smartphones are now being used to enhance the shopping experience and help that business to stand out from the competition, and even add a personal touch that will stick with consumers.

So, what are the top tech tools to use while shopping? What can you be taking advantage of? Let’s take a closer look.

Apps with Built-In Barcode Scanning

One of the biggest trends that retailers are jumping on board with is the ability to offer barcode scanning in their store app. The way it works is that customers download the business’s app, and they can then scan items in the store to view product information, how much stock is available on the shelf, and pricing. This additional information can help to close the sale, and it also helps to answer customer questions.

As for the technology being used, SCANDIT is perhaps one of the most well-known barcode scanners out there. Its Barcode Scanner SDK is able to turn a smartphone into an enterprise-grade barcode scanner. Businesses are using SCANDIT to offer customers that extra in-store value, and then on their end it acts as an inventory management app, it can provide insightful analytics of its users, and just make things more streamlined in general.

In-Store Navigation Tools

For those bigger box stores that can feel as though there are endless aisles, in-store navigation tools can be an absolute game changer from a customer-standpoint. These tools can help them find what they want quickly and easily, which then provides a positive shopping experience. Technology such as AR tech can actually guide the shopper through the aisles and provide a path to follow. Again, it’s taking some of the stress of in-store employees as customers don’t need as much help.

Allow Virtual Product Try-On and Testing

This one may seem really high-tech but it is already being used in a number of stores. The idea of allowing customers to try on products and test them out in a virtual sense can make the difference in closing a sale or losing it. Smart or virtual mirrors, for example, allow customers to stand in front of them with a piece of clothing and see how it would look on them.

Entertainment Options as Well

And tech isn't just meant to be functional, it can also be fun, as many retailers are discovering. They are creating their own games built into their app that customers can play while in-store. It’s all about enhancing the experience and standing out from the competition.

As technology continues to evolve, watch for the in-store shopping experience to follow suit and give customers a whole new list of tools and features to take advantage of.

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