With more than 90% of retail sales still taking place in physical retail stores and 65% of consumers using mobile devices while they shop, retailers and brands have a huge new opportunity to engage and influence shoppers where and when it matters most.
By leveraging a smartphone location within a store, retailers can deliver highly relevant and compelling content that engages and influences purchase decisions.
Shoppers have questions and you have answers. The challenge is, answering those questions at point of purchase when no sales associate is available. QR codes allow retailers and brands to connect labels, shelf tags and displays to product information and promotions that sell.
Everyday consumers are combining the digital and non-digital worlds to make shopping decisions. Ownership of smartphones now outpaces that of traditional mobile phones and more than half of shoppers surveyed own a smartphone and a majority use them while shopping.
...and the use of QR codes are increasingly playing a role in shopping with smartphones.
You see, the world of retail is a highly competitive one. Whether it's through special sales, viral advertisements or clever use of technology, retailers require inventive and creative ways to attract and engage shoppers. It's no surprise then that when offline-to-online QR codes were introduced; retailers were one of the first categories of businesses to recognize their potential.
Implementing such programs with QR codes can be just what's needed to add convenience and positive experience to your retail business. The following strategies have been proven successful by some of the top names in retail, beauty and fashion.
Instantly downloadable coupons and discounts are possible with QR codes. While many retailers provide a physical copy of their ad that customers can grab when entering the store, why not add QR codes so shoppers can store a digital version instead? This gives customers both options so that those without smart phones are not alienated, yet still offers that additional convenience to others. Coupons and promotions would be best placed at the entrance to the store. Especially if the store is located in a mall, this gives the potential customer motivation to enter the store and look around.
A great way to use QR codes in retail is to place a QR code on the tag of every item in the store to incorporate information on the product or give the customer helpful tips. For example, if you sell sports apparel make a tag with information on how to select the right size for comfort and performance, what related products are available in the store and excerise tips. If your store sells high-end designer brands, make a QR code with fashion information and show which clothes in store are the most popular this season.
If your store has a shopping app, let customers know about it by publishing a QR code in your circular, on signage and receipts. Scanning the QR code initiates the download of your app and the beginning of a deeper connection with your csutomers.
Help customers with their in-store purchase decision. With QR codes customers no longer need to leave your store to research a potential purchase. QR codes printed on product labels or displays can hold interactive demos or instructional videos. Products such as Blu-rays and games coupled with QR codes can provide curious consumers with the option to see trailers. Experiencing media on the fly can increase the chances that shoppers will buy on impulse.
Some people like nothing better than to chat with others about products they are buying or want to buy. Others want nothing more than another person’s recommendation before purchasing a new product. Why not have a QR codes link to either your mobile website with user reviews or a social networking site linked to the product? This way, the wary consumer, can get the assurance they need to make a purchase.
Customers place a lot of stock on reviews written by others, especially when it comes to higher ticket items. Reading reviews is usually only possible when researching a future product purchase or when shopping online. Bring the convenience of reviews into the store by embedding links to reviews for a product inside of a QR codes.
Bringing competitors into a store may seem like a crazy idea, but just like providing users with product reviews, this gives a convenience to the customer that could leave them with a positive impression. In addition, it shows confidence from a business perspective. QR codes in retail stores can link to a page that compares your prices to other stores and offer on-the-spot offers to close the sale.
One great feature of shopping on the Internet is being able to see similar and related products – a feature of most online storefronts. This is great when paired with some of the features above, such as the ability to see product videos or read reviews. Not only can similar products of other brands be shown, but also complementing products. For example, if a customer finds a blouse they like and scans a QR codes attached to it, it could show accessories or shoes that complement that particular outfit.
“Macy’s new Backstage Pass is an exciting evolution that brings our stable of fashion experts and designers directly to the customer while they’re shopping in our store, through their hand-held mobile devices,” said Martine Reardon, Macy’s executive vice president of Marketing. “By providing fun and informative video features via an easy-to-use, direct-to-consumer platform, we are connecting and engaging our customer in a personal way that enhances and adds a new element to their shopping experience.” QR codes, landing pages, and commerce powered by Delivr.
Can QR codes provide measurable insights that other marketing tools cannot?
Check out the powerful analytics from this retail case study and learn five simple steps to capture and leverage metrics for your next QR code campaign.
by Angie Schottmuller, Search Engine Watch