As retailers grapple with how to meet consumer demand for more personalized mobile experiences, the in-store product location firm Point Inside is announcing a new service today that will leverage historical shopping information to allow retailers to serve shoppers more relevant deals on their phones.
Point Inside’s new Deals Personalization tool is an extension of the company’s existing StoreMode platform, which upgrades the usefulness of retailers’ branded apps with features like indoor mapping, product location, and store-specific searches. With the Deals Personalization tool in place, retailers will be able to engage the users of their branded apps in real-time, while they shop or browse through the aisles of a store.
“Deals Personalization is built on Point Inside’s StoreMode platform, which creates a digital representation of each retail store capturing current product locations, departments and services. This digital map is then infused with enterprise data and mobile shopper usage,” says Point Inside’s Chief Revenue Officer Patrick Giusti. “By combining this information with a shopper’s in-store physical location, we can serve highly relevant, personalized deal recommendations.”
Giusti says the Deals Personalization tool utilizes Blue Dot technology, which is highly sought after by retailers. Although the tool has not been implemented by any retailers yet, Point Inside is confident that it will generate interest among businesses that place a strong value on having a sophisticated omnichannel strategy.
“This feature is a response to retailers and the challenges they’re faced with; whether they feel like they are losing out to e-commerce or not offering a more enhanced in-store experience, the market needs this now more than ever,” he says.
According to a 2016 survey by Sitecore and Vanson Bourne, more than one-third of adult Internet users expect the mobile apps they use to be more personalized over the next three years. Similar research from the CMO Council showed that marketers with personalized content see higher response and engagement rates.
With Point Inside’s new tool, retailers will be able to tailor deal recommendations based on their customers’ in-app search histories, as well as the contents of their shopping lists and their physical locations within brick-and-mortar stores. For example, a cosmetics store could use its mobile app to show deals on brands that shoppers have purchased during previous visits or recommendations for new products that fit individual shopper profiles. The retailer could also push recommendations based on the shopper’s real-time proximity to certain products or departments within the store.
“Incorporating mobile into the shopping experience is the key to achieving omnichannel goals and meeting shoppers’ expectations for a cohesive shopping experience across all channels,” Giusti says.
Retailers like Target have already included certain personalization features, such as individualized recommendations based on past purchases and interests, in their mobile apps, however Giusti says Point Inside’s Deals Personalization is the first technology tool that combines product and location signals with indoor location signals to make more strategic deal and product recommendations based on shopper preferences.
“If there are no signals available, we can also recommend deals or products based on similar products,” he says. “Additionally, we offer store-specific functionality, which is unique to Deals Personalization.”
Despite the aggressive growth of e-commerce over the past decade, Giusti says he still sees brick-and-mortar business as the biggest opportunity in retail. Personalization and shopper location are the foundation for the types of “next-generation retail experiences” that Giusti envisions retailers eventually being able to create, particularly with advancements in augmented reality and virtual reality.
“Today’s digitally connected customer expects retailers to personalize the in-store shopping experience the way they’ve been personalizing the online experience through intelligent product recommendations and deals,” he says. “This announcement signals another step towards a seamlessly connected, personalized in-store shopping experience for the connected, mobile shopper.”
Stephanie Miles is a senior editor at Street Fight.