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  • 17 April 2019 12:14

Australian Retailers Shift to Mobile Technology to Drive Sales

Study highlights investments in more in-store technology to meet customer expectations, improve productivity but most retailers are not adopting mobile properly

New research has revealed that when it comes to investing in technology, 39.1% of retailers say increasing sales and generating more in-store revenue are top priorities for their business.

The study, conducted by VDC Research for SOTI Inc., the world's most trusted provider of mobile and IoT management solutions, also highlighted that 34.8% of retailers adopt technology to help improve productivity.

“Many retailers are deploying new technologies to help drive worker efficiencies and support sales teams. This is a positive trend where the role of mobile devices in retail operations is not only about supporting worker transactions, but also engaging customers,” said Michael Dyson, Managing Director, Australia and New Zealand, SOTI. “Retailers want their next-generation mobile devices to show customer’s videos, support promotions, browse the web, place online orders and more.”

“The use of mobile point-of-sale (mPOS) devices in-store allows store associates to provide customers with a better retail experience, which leads to increased sales. For instance, the adoption of mPOS helps sales by allowing shoppers to avoid long lines at the cash register, which often results in customers not completing a purchase,” added Dyson.

To compete with e-commerce’s growing popularity, and as more customers use technology as part of their in-store shopping experience, more retail businesses are seeing the benefit of deploying mobile devices in their stores.

However, the study found that for retailers adopting mobile technology, many are not leveraging Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) solutions to their fullest potential. In fact, only 1 in 5 retailers claim to have complete visibility into their mobile devices (comprised of phones, tablets, POS systems, scanners and other rugged Internet-connected hardware), and application usage. Additionally, the research found that the primary cause of mobile solution failure was network connectivity issues (49.3%), and for 36.5% of respondents, security and access control were also factors.

“Ensuring mobile devices are working effectively is business critical for modern retail workflows. Just one dropped connection or poorly performing application per shift can translate into almost $20,000 in annual support and productivity loss costs per mobile worker. Additionally, the consequence of this downtime can result in up to a hundred minutes in lost productivity or 23% of a daily shift,” said Dyson.

“Retailers need to make the most of their mobility investments, by adopting management solutions that ensure device security to protect customer data, as well as reliable connectivity that supports both store associates and customers at all times.”

Workplace mobility has continued to rise over recent years, now representing more than 50% of the global workforce. As consumers increasingly expect a seamless shopping experience both online and in-store, retailers cannot afford to delay developing a mobile strategy to support devices becoming the norm in brick and mortar stores.

“With over half of the global workforce now mobile – representing 1.7 billion workers – mobile solutions are no longer a luxury but a necessity for many workers to perform their jobs,” said Dyson. “Equipping retail workers with mobile devices and access to critical enterprise content and applications is transforming retail businesses and driving higher levels of performance, productivity and customer service.”

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