Improve Retail Pop-Up Experiences with Technology

Retail Online Training


couple enjoying shopping
  • “Without effective technological solutions, pop-up retail can be an exercise in frustration for both vendors and customers.”
  • “Pop-ups used to be very one-offy, so you could get away with offering just the basics with average colors and products, but now they are more common and the competition is fierce.”
  • “Some retailers haven’t started to embrace things like 5G in pop-up shops, but it is a game changer.”

As the fall season is rapidly approaching, shoppers are on the lookout for fun events and festivities. Given the welcoming shift to social activities ramping up this year with a decrease in pandemic anxiety, savvy retailers have superheaded the re-emergence of pop-up retail. Bringing the retail experience to wherever the customer is located will be an important ongoing strategy for success. 

From kiosks in malls and buildings, to branded tents at festivals, to mobile retail trucks in sports arena parking lots, pop-up retail ventures have one common goal: to put themselves in front of shoppers, in the right place, at the right time. Even though putting your brand out there is the first step, it is not enough to just physically be there in front of customers. 

The Modern Day Pop-Up Experience

“Without effective technological solutions, pop-up retail can be an exercise in frustration for both vendors and customers,” Stacy Hamer, VP of Client Experiences at iQmetrix, said. “Success begins with a robust mobile retail strategy. In addition, your sales team needs wireless devices. They cannot be tethered to a laptop or desktop while at a kiosk or tent on site. With an iPad, they can be outside and walking around, engaging with customers. You can use LTE connectivity and be free to show products, wherever the consumer is.” 

There are some foundational table-steaks of technology that are necessary in order to have a successful pop-up event. According to Hamer, this includes mobile payments and the right inventory systems to ensure you have the right products available. For brands looking to take it a step further and really offer a personalized shopping experience, drop shipping capabilities can help save a sale when you do not have a certain size or color in stock that a shopper wants. 

Dropshipping Provides Next Level Personalization

“In providing the customer a more personalized experience, the ability to drop ship is exciting technology since customers can place the order with you on site and they will have the item they are looking for on their doorstep as soon as possible,” Hamer said. “Pop-ups used to be very one-offy, so you could get away with offering just the basics with average colors and products, but now they are more common and the competition is fierce. You have to be creative with your technology, and drop shipping is a game changer — it is a must-have to create good customer experiences.” 

The Future is Now With Pop-Up Payment Processing

In tandem with drop shipping capabilities, new developments in pop-up payment processing are modernizing the marketplace. Touchless technology now allows customers to pay using their own devices in pop-up shops. The sales associate simply selects the contactless payment option in the mobile point-of-sale on their tablet, and the system sends out a text to the customer’s device for them to complete the transaction. The bar is set really high for mobile payments because it is efficient, faster, easier, and generates a really good customer experience, according to Hamer. 

It All Comes Down to Your Connection

“The thing that gets overlooked the most for technology is connection. If you have a bad connection and the system is spinning and falling apart, you will not be able to connect and the bill will not get paid,” Hamer said. “Having a dedicated private connection is a big deal, and this is where things get really exciting with 5G. Some retailers haven’t started to embrace things like 5G in pop-up shops, but it is a game changer.” 

Having a personal network dedicated to your devices provides reliable connectivity, so you are not blocked or competing with everyone else. Losing connection in your pop-up kiosk can be a literal deal-breaker, because if a customer cannot pay their bill, they will walk away and find a retailer that has a running network. 

The world of telecom retail is making remarkable strides. “Whether retailers are implementing pop-up or other omnichannel retail strategies, today’s seamless retail management technology has evolved and will continue to do so. What is essential for retailers is that they continue to adopt these new technologies to stay ahead of the innovation curve and create great experiences for their customers and themselves,” Hamer said.

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