Research Paper: Advancements in Retail Technology

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Advancements in Retail Technology

Retail technology is one of the most important factors that influence companies' activity. This is because technological developments have revealed their importance in customers' shopping experience, in companies' success on the market, and on redefining marketing strategies. The issue in this case is represented by retailers trying to innovate in this field, or to embrace such technologies in their attempt to address their competition.

The globalization process that characterizes the current business environment and the changing and developing needs of individuals have determined the retail sector to invest in innovative strategies regarding the use of limited resources and the requirements of improved products and services. In such a competitive environment, companies need innovation in order to consolidate or improve their position on the market by gaining competitive advantage. Governments are also forced to encourage and support innovation in order to be able to successfully manage their limited resources. Innovation can be observed on individual non-profit level, in everyday life, when people must make use of their abilities and skills in developing innovative processes through which they can reach their objectives.

Innovation is required in all fields of activity. Anything that makes people's lives and work easier requires innovation. The great discoveries and inventions throughout history were developed based on innovation. Machineries that today we consider normal, like cars, computers, and other great apparatus that we use at home or at work were considered important innovations when they were discovered. Another important aspect related to innovation is represented by the fact that these innovative products and services determine and influence other innovations, by creating a chain of developments that lead to various products that can be used in numerous fields. Therefore, it is important to develop an environment that supports innovation in the public and in the private sector. However, this means great financial investments. There are countries and companies that rely on innovation and have the capability of supporting such an environment.

The most important issue regarding technological advancements is represented by retailers trying to determine customers to increase their online shopping. Most retailers have several benefits from expanding their online business. By developing an online shopping activity, companies can significantly reduce their costs. This is objective can be reached by addressing the international business environment while it is not necessary to develop headquarters in different countries. This significantly reduces logistics and human resources costs. Most companies develop international websites that customers around the globe can access. These customers can purchase online, and companies ship the ordered products to their customers.

This also helps companies increase the number of customers they address. They are also able to address niche customer segments that have different purchasing behaviors in comparison with most customer segments. In addition to this, online shopping provides benefits to customers also. They can shop at any time they want, they are not limited by traditional shops' schedule. They can compare prices and benefit from other customer reviews. However, some of these customers prefer to try the product on, or to put their hands on the product and study it.

Some of these companies have observed this need in certain customers. Therefore, they are developing strategies intended to address these needs also. These strategies are focused on combining tradition with online shopping. Such a strategy is based on providing QR codes for different products (Graham, 2011). Customers can scan these codes with their mobile phones and access detailed product specifications, customer reviews, and other information.

Technological developments that retailers must follow on are more even more important. Intel has developed a digital signage endcap concept and Reflect Systems Audience Touchpoint solution. These developments are intended to create a dynamic in store display that provides access to customers that are interested in informative videos, location of the products in case, comparisons with other products, and others.

The objectives of such technologies are represented by allowing customers to benefits from the advantages of online shopping, while putting their hands on the traditional product. Such technological advancements can significantly improve customers' shopping experience. This is because in such cases they would not have to wait for salespeople to present these products to them. In certain cases, salespeople are not well trained in providing customers the necessary information about certain products.

Online retailers are also trying to use technological advancements in their attempt to provide their customers the benefits of traditional stores. This refers to websites that use 3D imagery in order to present products, and to allow customers to feel the online shopping experience like the traditional shopping experience. There are certain customers that do not prefer online shopping because they cannot try the products on. Technological advancements in retails have developed a solution in this case also. It seems that certain companies are interested in investing in developing virtual dressing rooms on their websites. This is intended to help customers make a decision about the products they are interested in purchasing. In this case, it is not necessary that customers go to traditional stores to try products on. This is intended to increase the number of online shoppers.

Companies are interested in reducing the differences between traditional and online shopping. This is intended to help traditional shops to attract connected shoppers, but also to help online stores to attract traditional shoppers. This means that companies must invest in retail technology that allows them to satisfy different types of customers.

This can be a concern in the case of companies that are not interested in addressing both business models. This is because numerous companies focus either on developing a traditional model, or an online model. It seems that it is difficult to satisfy a large number of customers in such cases. It is important that companies invest in retail technologies that allow them to satisfy the developing needs of customers.

This situation was identified as an issue by traditional companies having difficulties in attracting online shoppers, and by online companies having difficulties in attracting traditional shoppers. Retail technology developments are considered an important issue that must be addressed by companies. Their strategies based on technological developments are also intended to increase their productivity.

Current Status

The issue of technology advancements in the retail business has a significant influence on modern society. This is because the influential relationship between society and technology is reciprocal. In other words, technology influences society, but the society also influences technology. Technological developments represent the response that scientists give to the problems, needs, and requirements of the society. Modern society is influenced by the technological developments that take place in different business fields.

Technological developments can significantly influence individuals' lifestyle. People can connect with their friends across the world, they can send files through their smart phones, they can pay their bills will their cell phones, and others. Certain individuals become addicted with technology (Dawson, 2012). They cannot perform normally unless they use technology. Other individual prefer to get away from technology. Some of them go to great lengths in order to reach this objective. They start living in the wilderness in order to avoid having to deal with technology, even with electricity. Therefore, individuals' response to technological developments is different. However, research in the field has revealed the fact that most people are interested in technological developments, and consider that their life can be improved with the help of different devices.

Technological developments are determined by the different needs of mankind. These developments are made in order to simplify people's lifestyle. However, certain opinions are based on the fact that they can complicate lifestyles. This means that technology has different effects on people's lives, and that their effects are contextual.

Modern society must develop an opinion on the technological advancements that are not useful. This is because many of such technologies have not been developed for efficient purposes, but for the fun of it. Their use becomes a habit. This means that they can complicate things if frequently used.

The modern population must also determine its opinion on technological developments applied in the retail business. In other words, they must determine if these developments are helpful to them. If they are not, companies should not invest in these technological developments because they determine increased prices for their products. In addition to this, they can determine certain customers to address competitors that do not provide such technology developments. But if these technologies help improve customers experience, it is likely that they agree with them.

Industry Impact

The modern retail business is significantly influenced by technological developments. Online shopping has expanded. This refers to increasing the number of online shoppers, but also the number of online shops. Traditional stores must also follow these industry trends. This means that they must develop websites where customers can study their products, and make online shopping (Varley, 2006). These stores must address technological developments in order to improve their relationship with customers.

This strategy can be difficult to follow by some companies. This is because technological innovations are expensive,… [END OF PREVIEW]

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