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Amazon Brings the Fitting Room to You

To date, Amazon has struggled to successfully break into the apparel industry. However, “Prime Wardrobe,” may be a major game changer for the company and its competitors as it brings the fitting room to you.

The service allows Amazon Prime members to load up a box with three or more apparel items from the website. They are then shipped to the customer who can try them on and keep the items for seven days. Whatever they decide to keep they will receive up to a 20 percent discount on. The items they don’t want can be placed back in the box and picked up from their location for free.

Retailers Feel Threatened—But Should They?

This latest service has put retailers (both online and in store) on notice. Industry experts have said that for traditional brick and mortar retailers, the only place they could truly differentiate themselves was in the fitting room. With consumers potentially no longer needing to go to the store, wait in line, and step into a fitting room, Prime Wardrobe could be a major threat to retailers.

However, despite being incredibly convenient, the service is not a complete replacement of a fitting room. Unlike other similar services like Stitch Fix, Amazon does not have a stylist available to curate clothes from its massive online selection, which can be difficult to navigate and make the apparel shopping process overwhelming for some. Many consumers also prefer to try items on in a well set-up fitting room which allows them to see themselves in a piece of clothing from multiple angles and in ideal lighting.

Additionally, while free two-day shipping is fast and convenient given traditional lead-times, it still won’t satisfy the occasional need to purchase something same day. While some consumers might plan out apparel shopping for future events, almost everyone is caught with the occasional “Oh shoot, I forgot, I need ____ for this weekend!” and the Prime Wardrobe service just can’t meet the timeline most of those situations operate on.

Create the Perfect Retail Experience Through the Fitting Room

Mirrors and lighting are only part of creating the best retail experience for customers. With solutions like Alert Tech’s platform, brick and mortar stores can transform their sales associates into knowledgeable personal stylists.fitting room

Improved customer service moves from the front of the store all the way back to the fitting room where customers can call an attendant without having to shout or wait. In-store alerts and occupancy sensors also provide retailers with in-depth insight about store patterns and trends so that they can further enhance the retail experience.

Finding a Place in Traditional Retail

Traditional retail is not dead, but thriving in this changing ecosystem means retailers must use digital, physical, and complimentary service offerings to differentiate themselves from the pack. This is especially true when it comes to the in-person customer service experience.

To learn more about how Alert Tech helps retailers improve the customer experience and increase sales, visit http://alerttech.net/solutions.

Why is the Fitting Room so Important in Retail Analytics?

Relatively speaking, the fitting room is one of the smallest areas of any retail store. These unobtrusive rooms are often tucked away in the back, and as a retailer, you could easily forget all about them. That is, until you understand the importance of this small-but-mighty area of the store.

For example, did you know that fitting rooms are key to increased sales and decreased returns? Let’s look at why the fitting room is crucial to retail performance.

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How Retail Associates Can Focus on Metrics and Win Big

How motivated and engaged are your associates? If a customer walks into a random store, what are the chances they will receive excellent customer service? Will they walk away having had a positive personal experience with your brand?

How do you begin to benchmark the quality of service, and what can you do to improve?

If you identify and focus on improving customer service metrics, you’ll improve not just your revenues, but the motivation and satisfaction of your associates. Here’s how both you and your store staff can win big.

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How to Collect Data with Fitting Room Technology

At Alert Tech, we get a number of frequently asked questions about our fitting room technology. Two of the most common questions are:

  1. What is your system used for?
  2. How can it make my retail store more effective at providing a stellar customer experience?

I’ll break down the answer to the first question into the main hardware components:

  • fitting room occupancy sensors give retailers insight into an area where you can’t install cameras
  • call buttons allow shoppers to request sales assistance when they are already in the fitting room (Of course, there’s a lot more to it than that. You can read more about what kinds of customers use call buttons and why fitting room call buttons boost sales.)
  • most retailers use iOS devices to control the fitting room situation (for instance, our app can be used to reserve fitting rooms, add customer names, and store important item information)

However, our fitting room technology provides more than just a means for better customer service. Our system also collects data that can be helpful to retailers. What types of data can our system record, and how can your store benefit from it? Read on to learn more.

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5 Most Important Retail Industry Benchmarks for Fitting Rooms

In the retail apparel industry, there are few things more crucial to the success of your business than the fitting room. You can do all the marketing and paid advertising you want, but if your customers don’t connect with your products and associates enough to try on your clothes, you’re in serious trouble.

To get an idea of how important the fitting room is, just consider the data we’ve collected:

  • Shoppers who use fitting rooms are almost 7 TIMES more likely to buy products compared to those who simply browse the sales floor.
  • Shoppers who enter the fitting room on a regular basis are TWICE as likely to buy products from that store.
  • Shoppers who receive service in the fitting room are THREE TIMES as likely to buy products from that store.
  • If a customer does not visit the fitting room, it doubles the likelihood of that customer returning part of their purchase to the store.

Because fitting rooms are so important in the apparel business, they are worth paying attention to. They must become a part of your analytics, as much as door traffic and daily sales.

Specifically, you should be measuring these five industry benchmarks.
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How does the fitting room look in the ‘store of the future’?

A question that many different retail shop owners are asking these days (and indeed, a common question among shoppers themselves) is what the “store of the future” will resemble. Will brick and mortar stores even continue to exist? Will the entire shopping scene shift to online-based operations and purchases? Or will the “store of the future” be a hybrid between the traditional brick and mortar store setup and the more modern shopping experience offered by Amazon and other online retailers?

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How to Beat Your Annual Sales Goals with Fitting Room Technology

It was the start of the holiday shopping season. The music had switched to Christmas carols, Santa was setting up shop in the center court, and parties were being planned for the first snowfall in the mall.

This was supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year, but for Joe, a manager at a large retail store, it was far from delightful.

Sales for the year were miserable. He was going to close out the year down 9% from last year, which for him was unacceptable. His boss was upset, of course, but even worse was that he had just found out that his friend Shannon across the mall was having the opposite experience in her store. They’d always been friendly rivals, but he usually ended up having a better year than her.

What was she doing differently?

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How One Facebook Post Destroyed a Retailer’s Reputation

Ugh! Worst shopping experience ever!

The post stopped Samantha in her tracks. She and Kelly (her friend who posted the mini-rant on Facebook) were shopping buddies. For Kelly to have the “worst” experience while shopping was rare – especially when shopping for her favorite thing – clothes! This complaint wasn’t going to do much for this retail store’s reputation!

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Can’t Find Your Size? RFID Technology to the Rescue

The streets are littered with the ideas of those who thought they had developed the “next big thing” in retail technology. Consider the key lessons learned from the first forays into Mobile POS devices. While the first iterations of this new technology weren’t an immediate success, the intentions behind it are sound, and the next generation is sure to be invaluable.

Without these constant efforts to improve and innovate in retail technology, we wouldn’t have new tools to surprise and delight customers, while improving store management processes. Look at radio-frequency identification (RFID) tracking, for example. With RFID tags, retailers can not only confirm that an item is in-stock, but they can also pinpoint exactly where it is located in the store.

How do these technological enhancements affect customers? With each new development that increases efficiency or lowers overall costs, customers benefit from an improved shopping experience.

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How to Let Your Customers Keep Shopping While Waiting in Line

Even though your customers may be excited to try on a few pieces of clothing at your retail store, they will not hesitate to put their selected items back on the rack and head for the exit without making a purchase if your fitting room lines are too long.

It’s not always easy for retail companies to implement innovative technology into their customer service strategy, but in today’s world technology is being used by businesses of all types to improve the client experience, and with great results.

If you want to prevent your customers from leaving your store unhappy, you need to make it possible for them to browse the store while they wait for a fitting room to become available.

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