—CEO Bill Simon at the Goldman Sachs Global Retail Conference
Digital-physical convergence projects that Wal-Mart has launched in the last 12 months include:
- Ship from store has recently gone from the pilot phase to a broader rollout.
- Pay with cash for online orders.
- Lockers in stores. Customers can order online and then go their store locker to pick up items.
- Scan and go mobile payment. Self-checkout by a customer using a smartphone.
- Store-specific mobile app. Tells shoppers what specials are available in a specific store on a specific date.
- Same day delivery. Up and running in San Francisco for groceries.
- Non-traditional loyalty marketing program. Uses multiple data sources to produce a multi-dimensional view of individual shoppers and customer segments. It pulls and aggregates data from Sam’s Club, walmart.com, traceable tender in Walmart stores, and data from suppliers.
Inside Walmart’s Digital-Physical Convergence Strategy | Retail Best Practices | RIS News
According to an interview with the Wall Street Journal, snack company Mondelez International will introduce so-called “smart shelves” into grocery stores starting in 2015. The shelves, which will be concentrated at the checkout line, will use a variety of tools to identify a shopper’s sex and age. The machine will then use that info to choose an ad custom tailored for the shopper’s demographic.
The shelves should also be able to track individual engagement, and monitor how long each ad is watched. Weight sensors under the product holders will let the machine know when a customer has picked up an item, or is considering a purchase. Custom coupons can be displayed, in order to boost conversion rates.
It’s not quite the future advertising scenario we envisioned, but it certainly lays the groundwork for highly personalized, targeted video ads. If this tech is combined with wearable devices using, say, Bluetooth LE, the program wouldn’t even have to guess a shopper’s demographic. In fact, it would likely know their name and exactly what kind of candy they enjoy.”