Technology in recent times has grown exponentially, and its effects are pretty visible in the customer's buying habits. Presently, around 20% of the total retail sales come from an eCommerce store. On the other hand, more than 70% of the customers still depend on the traditional method of buying goods.
It is the responsibility of the retailer to satisfy customers during both in-shop and online shopping. While online shopping settings might not offer the leisure of palpable real-life experience, in-store shopping helps to closely examine each product before buying.
However, with limited shelf space, there is a limit to storing products in a physical shop. And that's where online shopping scores over in-store shopping. The need of the hour is to combine the best of both worlds under one hood. And that can be done with the help of an endless aisle.
Today, in this article, we will read about endless aisles in detail. We will also consider some things to consider when setting up an endless aisle.
Backed by the latest technology and software systems, an infinite aisle can be described as a bridge connecting the online and in-store shopping worlds. The central idea revolves around placing online orders for all potential customers who pay their visit to the retail stores. All customers have access to browse products at their leisure. Through endless aisles, shoppers have the luxury of ordering items that may be out of stock or aren't sold in the store but can be shipped and delivered to their doors in a few days.
Through this concept, the store's owner does not necessarily have to manage the warehouse or maintain a balanced stock at different locations. A catalog with thousands of products will open up as one enters the store. In other words, an endless aisle is a form of self-service where customers can pick and choose before ordering. Thus, it can be said that this concept is a seamless blend of virtual interaction and physical presence.
Additionally, it meets the growing expectations of users in different geographical areas. So, whether one's looking for an in-store or online shopping experience, one can get everything under one hood through the endless aisle. And if integrated effectively, this technology also offers real-time inventory updates.
There are three types of endless aisles that retailers should be aware of. These include:
Customers make their purchases online using the QR codes present on the product signage or through email carts, where virtual charts are current for customers to get the complete purchase at the end.
Rather than having stock on hand, shop owners can quickly deliver all products to the customer's address. An associated store collects the order from customers through the eCommerce store. Further, the order data is picked by the third-party supplier who is responsible for packing and shipping the product.
As customers enter the store with endless aisles, they can easily purchase in-stock items from the store. Other out-of-stock items can be ordered online.
Using innovative endless aisle strategies can positively impact your business in several ways. Here are some of the most crucial benefits of incorporating an endless aisle. Let’s have a look -
According to a report released by National Retail Federation, abbreviated as NRF, in 2021, online sales will account for over $1.050 trillion of total US retail sales. Out of this, nearly $218 billion in purchases were returned because of several issues such as fitting, quality, price, and so on. The gap between reality and expectations actually encourages shoppers to use the return policy. Products look way different on the website and in person, which creates an unwanted gap. Endless aisle solves this issue as it gives you a fair chance to actually try out the product without ordering.
Inventory cost can be described as the cost generated from holding and ordering inventory. Since endless aisle allows you to check out products online while you’re in the store, it minimizes inventory costs significantly. In this way, it is now possible to store more products in the stores or warehouses with more shelf space without actually increasing the inventory.
Imagine yourself entering a store where you are provided a complete product catalog to choose from. Isn’t it the best option? Similarly, your customers like it when you give them ample options at physical stores. It improves customer satisfaction and chances of them returning back your store rather than your competitor. According to a survey, around 30% of a customer gets turnoff because of the unavailable of products at the store.
Additionally, only 16% of people decided to compromise and go with another brand, whereas 37% decided to walk off without buying anything at all. In such a scenario, the concept of the endless aisle is no less a boon that bids the final goodbye to the frustrating in-store stockouts. Additionally, it minimizes the chance that customers are going to buy stuff from a competitor. Endless aisle encourages customers to make a purchase by educating them about different products.
Staples is a popular store that supplies more than 100000 products such as office furniture, tech products, school supplies, and cleaning equipment. Customers can now make payments at the store checkout or touchscreen kiosk. It is equipped with a self-service system where the customer is required to scan the QR codes of the product before moving toward the POS system.
We live in a digitalized world where technology has taken off like never before. With the adverse effects of covid-19, e-commerce businesses gained immense popularity. However, the world is opening up; it is best to follow social distance. If you’re an owner of a retail shop and looking to minimize the retail space, endless aisles can help you. Additionally, it can help in the inventory management process as well.
Today, there are several renowned brands in the world who have already employed the endless aisle technology in stores. Here are three major examples of the endless aisle where retailers are using this concept to minimize workload and offer a better customer experience. Thorough research about this concept and check what kind of Endless Aisle would best suit you. Later, develop an in-store process where all customers get adequate support from experts.
To understand more about the endless aisle in detail, visit Fashinza!