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Why the Future of Retail Will Blow Your Mind

For the past few years, brick-and-mortar retailers didn’t have a fighting chance to compete with the personalization and convenience provided by online shopping. By cultivating mountains of rich customer data, online retailers had the upper hand. Every action and inaction — from what customers clicked on and how much time they spent looking at certain products to their social activity and response to email programs – helped online retailers tailor each email, pop-up or recommended product to drive sales and provide a superior experience. For consumers, it was a welcome reprieve from the antiquated task of visiting a store, being treated as a stranger and receiving often-questionable customer service. This new customer journey had new engagement touch points across marketing, sales and service, and traditional retailers struggled to keep up. The tides are turning, however. After years of showrooming and online retail commanding more attention along with emerging technology like iBeacons and immersive personalized mobile experiences, the data-driven shopping experience is set to land inside brick-and-mortar stores. The lines between the physical and digital worlds are blurring, and the ease, convenience and excitement

previously reserved for online shopping will soon be pillars of tomorrow’s shops. Below are nine mainstays of the future of retail: 1. Personal shoppers for all: Retailers will focus on transforming mobile apps into a personal concierge of sorts when shoppers enter a store. In-store beacons will automatically wake up consumers’ apps to deliver highly relevant and personal content. Shoppers will be welcomed upon entering a store

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or department. The “personal shopper” app features will point out where they can find favorite products, alert them of products they might like and tell them about items being considered, like which celebrity

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wore the sunglasses in question. 2. Fewer (foot) traffic jams: In-store mapping and smart navigation will become highly accurate, thanks to real-time data generated from beacons. By tracking the whereabouts of shoppers, managers can better design layouts to streamline the flow. If a person has a shopping list, at a grocery store, say, the best route to pick up everything will be provided through a mobile device the second that person walks through the door. It will account for real-time situational factors like current movement throughout the store or congested aisles. If the shopper veers off course or adds anything to the list, the recommended route will automatically be refreshed. 3. Juicy bait hooks passersby. Retailers will target people who walk by their store through highly personalized offers or messages about things like new styles or reminders about items saved on a wish list. A woman passing a beauty store may be prompted to enter after receiving an alert that she is likely running low on moisturizer, given the date of her last purchase and previous buying behavior. 4. Self-checkout 2.0. One of the most frustrating parts of in-store shopping, is waiting in a line to check out. More retailers will follow retail pioneer Apple’s lead with its EasyPay self-mobile checkout. The customer find what he or she needs, scan it, selects a payment method and finalize the transaction, without waiting in a line or talking to an associate if not needed. As consumers become increasingly comfortable with contactless payments, the ability to control when and where the checkout happens will become more prevalent. 5. On-demand customer service. Previously a customer might have searched to no avail in a store for a sales associate for help in finding a size or answering a question. Leveraging mobile applications, retailers will maximize staff resources and enhance the customer experience by allowing shoppers to virtually request assistance. Through point-of-service applications or mobile or tablet devices, sales associates will instantly and automatically access a shopper’s profile, customer preferences and buying history to provide a better and efficient experience. Predictive analytics will be leveraged to know what a customer wants before he or she asks for it. From the floor, associates will be able to order out-of-stock items seamlessly and select a shopper’s preferred delivery method while also making personalized recommendations on other products. 6. Virtual fitting rooms and aisles. The rich virtual world will continue to supplement the physical world via consumers’ phones and connected wearable devices. Shoppers will access information and special offers through augmented reality while moving through a store or seeing how they would look wearing something without trying it on. Plus consumers will be able to opt in to access recommendations, such as for bathing suits based on their body shape and size, virtually try them on and then walk to the counter where a sales associate will be waiting with them. 7. Out-of-store, out-of-home shopping and flexible fulfillment. To compete with Amazon, eBay and other vendors with short-wait and free deliveries, more retailers will offer a menu of flexible fulfillment options, whether it’s a preorder and pickup in a store or shopping in a store offering free home delivery. Companies will introduce shopping capabilities in other arenas, similar to the Tesco Homeplus virtual shopping experience in the Seoul subway system. As consumers continue to hunt for speed and convenience, retailers will seek opportunities that grant customers the ability to shop, pay and schedule delivery in unique environments, from parks and airports to bus stations and stadiums. 8. Power to the consumer. In the palm of their hands, consumers are carrying around their own big data tools. They can scan bar codes and compare prices, check reviews or snap a picture and ask their friends for advice. Consumers have more power than ever before in the shopping experience and as a result, companies will provide rich information and social capabilities optimized for every screen, while integrating scanning and other tools to unlock content in their apps. Customers will shop around and more retailers will take broader steps toward transparency. 9.The power of tribes. Powerful communities are being formed around brands and experiences — from runners and cross-fitters to foodies and gamers. More communities will be tied to brands and experiences as never before and will influence major buying decisions. The in-store shopping experience is on the verge of great transformation. Forward-thinking marketers have undertaken inspiring experiments in the effort to enhance store offerings. Retailers of all sizes, though, will soon adopt data-driven strategies to compete with their online cousins on convenience and personalization. As overhead costs stay high, retailers will adopt mobile-first approaches — that leverage beacons, augmented reality and cross-channel customer profiling — to bridge shoppers’ online and offline worlds. In the age of mobile-dominant consumers — who have expectations of real-time, highly relevant and personalized experiences — omni-channel innovation is no longer a merely something nice

to have at a physical store. It’s a must-have. Shoppers, then, are poised to be the big winners.


8 Ways the ‘Internet of Things’ Will Impact Your Everyday Life

Bigger than the Industrial Revolution. This is how some analysts talk about the budding “Internet of Things” and the innovation that will come as a result. We will start to see a plethora of “dumb” objects become connected, sending signals to each other and alerts to our phones, and creating mounds of “little data” on all of us that will make marketers salivate. The Internet of Things took center stage at CES, with connected tennis rackets and crockpots capturing early headlines. Some of the largest tech behemoths have recently joined together to make the Internet of Things a closer reality in all of our homes, cars and lives. The AllSeen Alliance is seeing companies such as Cisco, Panasonic and Sharp pledging to make their pipelines of new appliances and devices compatible with a networking system so machines can start interacting. By 2017, we will see smart objects hitting shelves on broad scale and we will start reducing waste, costs and inconvenience while increasing efficiency and safety. Here are the changes coming to our everyday lives — some obvious, other perhaps less obvious — that I am most excited about in the Internet of Things: Tuning your car: As more machines speak to each other and systems integrate, you will no longer miss an oil change. Your truly “smart” car will preemptively reach out to your mechanic when it is time for the annual tune up or your tire pressure is running low, and by cross referencing your calendar, appointment suggestions will be delivered to you to confirm a time with one click. Monitoring your health: When a prescription is running low, an appointment will be made with your physician through connected RX bottles. Doctors will be kept informed with how often and when their patients are taking their medicine and those with ongoing health issues will be able to have things such as blood pressure and sugar levels monitored remotely. Energy consumption: High-energy consumption household appliances will adjust based on dynamic price signals to lower your electric bill. Thermostats and lighting will learn your habits to create the optimal setting based on your daily life, such as turning to your ideal temperature just before you arrive home. These gadgets will also sense when no one is in the house and turn off automatically to reduce wastes and costs. Driving and traffic jams: Driving will get a lot safer. Traffic lights will be able to adjust to real-time traffic conditions such as when an emergency vehicle is approaching. Road sensors will make changes to the speed limit based on weather and accidents, while also communicating directly to car dashboards about unsafe conditions (e.g. Slow down. The turn in a quarter mile is icey). Grocery lists: Smart refrigerators will sense when you are running low on staples such as eggs or milk and will automatically populate your

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grocery list. Stores will push reminders to add items to your list when it predicts you about to run out based on your historical purchasing behavior and average buying trends. When you are walking through the store, reminders will get pushed to you to ensure you never have to make that dreaded second trip. Our morning alarm: The traffic on your route to work and the weather will soon affect what time your alarm goes off. If there is an accident or road construction on your usual drive, your alarm will go off early and alternate routes will populate in your dashboard. Of course, your coffee machine will be in the loop to make sure you have your cup of joe for the road. Monitoring your baby: Through their smartphones, parents will monitor their baby’s breathing, temperature and activity. Babies will don connected onesies that will send an alert when there is anything abnormal. Of course, the other babies in your life will also reap the benefits of connectivity. Pet monitoring systems will allow you to monitor their activity and behavior from afar, so you can see how well your potty training is working and how honest your dog walker really is. What’s on your body: Wearable tech has perhaps gotten the most attention in the Internet of Things chatter to date. Many products are now in their second or third generations, offering sleeker designs and more integration with different systems. From monitoring activity during workouts to sleeping patterns to hearing aids, the devices that we “wear” are becoming much more sophisticated, connecting to all of our social media accounts, and tracking much more quality and quantity data. The budding number of sensors will detect and act on environmental and other contextual factors, such as weather; will be aware of who and how many people are around in its vicinity to change levels of input and output; and adjust to save resources and improve safety. With the growing number of connected things in our lives, we will all become more in tune with our own data (a la Nike Fuelband) and start to expect more personal interactions with brands and retailers. Marketers will need to establish a trust among consumers and prove that

if they give up access to some of their personal data, in return they will get more tailored offers, deals and interactions. Smartphones will become not only everyone’s portal into the Internet of Things ecosystem (look no further than smartphone-controlled light bulbs), but a complete remote control to your life (if it isn’t already). Every enterprise needs to take mobile even more seriously and have it as a key point of consideration of future connected efforts.


Make Way for the Real Smart Car

Imagine a world your

car finds out that you had a stressful day and plays uplifting music or prepares you for a challenging day by finding a pep talk. While all of the rage is around self-driving cars as the next step of evolution for automotive, there is an intermediate, often overlooked, step that will delight us all. Transportation is the latest industry on the verge of a major transformation, driven by more prevalent broadband connectivity and personalized technologies. The historic relationship people have had with their cars has been rather cold, with autos remembering very little (if anything) about drivers [think: 50 First Dates]. The most magical experience has been a car remembering a driver’s seat setting, and even this has been pretty rare. When you think about how much time people spend in their cars, the lack of personalization to date is quite astonishing. Automakers, OEMs and technology companies have been ramping up innovation to bring the next generation fleet of internet-connected vehicles to the roads, and as a result, will soon make cars the smartest computers we own. Think about this: the smartphone only really became ‘smart’ when it started leveraging sensors like GPS, accelerometer and gyroscope. The car has leveraged these longer than any other device. As we start using the car-as-a-computer to deliver personalized, situationally-aware experiences, the fantasy of driving KITT, the fantastic supercar from Knight Ride, will only become closer to a reality. While industry leaders don’t necessarily agree on timing, most expect all new cars to come equipped with connected in-car features like video, apps, infotainment, vehicle to vehicle (V2V) communication and calling systems by 2016, at the latest. Supported in the cloud, the connected car will leverage a car’s unique (and increasing number of) sensors like cameras, weather detection, motion sensors and more to provide not only an enhanced driving experience, but safer roads as well. The current car app eco-system has mostly been inspired by the smartphone, not taking the car context into account. This is not suitable to be used at 70 mph. Content providers are starting rethink the auto experience, solving for a car-first solution. The trends that have emerged as the primary areas for innovation in the industry are: Music is not the only thing that streams – Robust real-time content streams: The consumer experiential in-car shift will lie in the delivery of real-time, personalized information delivered through in-dash screens. Live traffic information and navigation, smart parking, weather and safety alerts will be communicated in addition to hundreds of content streams of local information, like dining and entertainment, which will be bookable through a tap of the screen. All of the content streams will be connected and aware, providing an intelligent, 360-degree snapshot of information. Cars Differentiate Drivers, Deliver Personalized Experiences: The winner of the personalized driving experience will be the automobiles that are able to decipher between drivers of shared cars through unique keys, signals from the driver’s smartphone or even biometrics. When a car is empowered with this information, only then will be able to provide unique driving experiences. For instance, if a couple shares one car, the preferred temperature, seat settings and Pandora or Spotify radio station will automatically trigger; the most frequently-traveled routes will appear on the screen for one-touch navigation (with real-time traffic results, of course); and relevant offers will populate, personalized for each driver and triggered by one of the identifying factors. Predictive Analytics Change A Driver’s Mood, Route and Overall Experience: With the right technology, cars can understand our daily, weekly and monthly patterns better than anything else. Currently, cars don’t anticipate anything about the driver. On a basic level, cars could recognize the route that a driver typically takes every morning, and alert them of closed roads, construction, accident reports and more. On a more sophisticated front, cars could connect with a driver’s mobile phone, recognize that their calendar full of appointments on a given day and provide recommendations of quick-dining restaurants for lunch in between two meetings. Situation Aware Marketing Comes to the Dash: Advertising in the car context is incredibly difficult to solve for. Driver distraction is unacceptable; delivering a marketing message that diverts the attention of the driver while she is going down a highway at a high speed will create legal and PR nightmares – not to mention being morally wrong — for automakers and the brand. Advertising will certainly make its way into the car, but only when it can be safe by being aware of the driver’s current situation and relevant at a specific time and place.. When gas is running low, for instance, a petroleum station can send an alert with pricing and voice directions on how to get there. A local coffee shop can market to a driver as they come within a block or two. Cars will also become a digital wallet that stores credit card information and loyalty cards, allowing a driver to transact from the car using NFC. Imagine, for instance, not having to get out a credit card at the gas station, but selecting the card on an in-dash screen and the payment happening seamlessly. When the driver leaves the car, she could beam whatever she needs to her smartphone. V2V Communication for Safer Roads: The emerging wireless V2V communication capabilities have the potential to greatly reduce car crashes, the often-deadly impact of blind spots and other hidden traps. With advancements in V2V communication, cars will communicate and alert each other of dangers. V2V communication will also enhance traffic flow, rerouting vehicles to less busy roads. While network reliability will remain an issue, at least in the near term, increased urbanization is priming the auto industry for significant innovation. The race is heating up among automobile manufactures to provide the most advanced, personalized and safe experience on the roads. So while driverless cars are the shiny objects that everyone is buzzing about, the innovations happening within the “traditional” driving environment deserve just as much attention. This too will be magical.


How ‘Little Data’ Will Unleash an Army of Jason Bournes

We all, of course, live in a physical world — our homes, offices, cars, places

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we frequent, and people with whom viagra gnc we associate. However, the world that is dramatically changing the way we live our lives and our daily experiences is a mass ocean of data, invisible to everyone but us. These physical and digital worlds are becoming increasingly interconnected by millions of sensors that make up the Internet of Things. Our data is superimposed over the physical world, accessible through smartphones, car dashboards, tablets, biosensors — and eventually through a Google Glass headset interface or the next-gen equivalent. 70-463 Grounded in ever-sophisticated predictive analytics, this data-world is quickly evolving and will soon automatically take action on our behalf, interacting with our physical world, offering options and opportunities you want, foreseeing what you don’t even know you want, all without having to ask. You are the center of both worlds because mobile devices have shrunk big data and made it about you. They have acquired,

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filtered and reconfigured themselves for your personal needs and wants. Some might call this a “James Bond future” because it’s about hi-tech, futuristic toys and living on the cutting edge of cool. But we don’t need — or want — to be James Bond. Digerati will quickly evolve from Bond (reacting to his environment) to Jason Bourne (always anticipating traffic, weather, the bad guys — intuitively exploiting every opportunity). We’ll realize a Jason Bourne future where our physical world magically cooperates with us. Consider these facts:

  • Automakers are integrating disparate data, blending everything from incoming phone calls to physical road conditions, gas prices, traffic, weather, and opportunities (fuel dropping below 20 percent — stop at next station).
  • Intelligent houses monitor and adjust temperature, energy expenditure, call your security company if an alarm is triggered, and send refrigerator alerts if you’re low on milk.
  • Fitbit is one of the wearable computing devices that feature biosensors and biometrics. Soon, an athlete with a heart condition will get a life-saving automated cialis malaysia price text and call indicating his pulse is rising with a recommendation that could help him avert a heart attack.

So what is driving this (r)evolution? Six primary trends:

  1. Smartphones are getting smarter. Smartphone apps will use more sensors (GPS, camera, microphone) to drive relevance, using location as a cue for situational awareness and action triggers. Imagine your phone checks your train status in the background as you walk towards the station without you asking for it, and

    adjusts your thermostat as you drive home,

    without triggering it.

  2. Every device and location is becoming a node in the network. Cars, homes, utilities, the office, and stores will be intelligent nodes; your smartphone will be the intelligent glue, delivering the beginning of a user-centric model.
  3. Shared data is also becoming a norm. Data will be shared phone-to-phone, vehicle-to-vehicle and via any real-time, peer-to-peer communication link. Rapid-data authentication and ID protection make it private and secure.
  4. Cloud nine will be your home address. The cloud will store your tastes and preferences, feeding them to the services you use. Imagine you’re driving toward a smart, linked, next-gen ATM that has been “told” you’re arriving by your smartphone. The ATM already knows (based viagra china on secure, encrypted data you stored in the cloud) that on the third Friday canadian pharmacy of each month you like to transfer $1,000 to your wife’s account, while simultaneously paying your mortgage and withdrawing cash.
  5. Predictive Analytics: As more of your data is collected and analyzed, tech will anticipate what you need or want before you even realize it. My favorite store, for instance, will predict what products I like and send me a relevant offer.
  6. You will be the “master orchestrator.” Tomorrow’s tech will empower users to blend data streams with on-demand information from the cloud to help smartphones “think” and suggest ways to make lives easier. Connected services also enable the user to trigger an action; big data analysis, personalization and machine learning will be key elements of the “orchestrator” toolset.

The cutting edge of cool means rejecting the unattainable Bond fantasy for the increasingly available Bourne reality. The cialis and nasal congestion Internet of Things is ushering in a new lifestyle with seamless orchestration of information services and the corresponding real-world entities. Every setting we encounter will be ready to interact for fast, easy, smooth, smart and automatic collaboration. 700-501 Who needs James Bond’s buy viagra in mexico “license to kill” when the new urban mobile lifestyle can give you Jason Bourne’s “license to thrill”?