How IoT Benefits the Retail Sector

By CIOReview | Tuesday, May 22, 2018
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The Internet of Things (IoT) has revolutionized the shopping experience. As the demand for innovation rises and is constantly met, the focus shifts to improving customer experience. The IoT ecosystem connects, handles and transmits enormous amounts of data across applications, systems, and platforms.

As IoT aids in sensor-enabling retail enterprises, IoT gains importance by aiding retailers in capitalizing on every available signal. Automatic monitoring, sensing and alerting solutions also aid in enhancing productivity, but it is not a true representation of IoT. This stems from the fact that IoT is more than providing IP connectivity, but requires a network connecting devices which communicate and operate autonomously.

Retailers seek to use the potential of IoT in improving their productivity and customer experience. IoT is frequently used to connect people and things across the retail ecosystem to gather and analyze data to gain insights and act on them. The retail sector connects people to products and product information and attempts to improve planning, placement, and marketing by collecting data about consumer journeys. This is referred to as wayfinding, asset tracking, customer journey heat mapping, digital engagement or connected customer experience, instead of directly referring to the use of IoT.

As retailers realize the value of “connected commerce” they attempt to integrate applications, platforms, systems, and ecosystems, to form a single view of the customer and his choices across several channels. This omnichannel experience is the foundation of customer-centric retailing. Retailers thus survey opportunities for business development in sensor-enabled contexts as they are expected to provide a seamless, convenient experience.

To deliver the customer experience sought by the consumers of today, it is necessary to increase productivity, automate decision making and reallocate resources appropriately, and IoT is of prime importance in bringing about these changes.