How do you keep today’s digitally-savvy shoppers happy? In this age of instant gratification, shoppers want to make instant, well-informed choices. This presents a huge challenge to retailers – how do they make store information accessible to their employees, sales staff and executives in order to enhance the store experience? Handheld computers or mobile computers are increasingly being used as in-store communication devices as they offer access to a broad range of product and organizational information.
However, this presents another challenge as sales associates carry or utilize multiple devices during the day – wall phones, two-way radios, handheld computers. Streamlining this flow of information between these various devices is essential as it helps employees to focus on customers. More and more retailers are leaning towards unified communications (UC) technology to drive omnichannel communications and empower store employees with easy-to-use communication tools. UC allows integration of multiple communication systems (voice, video and messaging) into one and by deploying it on existing handheld devices, allows an easy flow of information between departments.
Leverage existing investment in handheld computers
If retailers already have a plethora of devices in place and a significant investment in handheld computers, customized UC solutions can help. Customized softphone clients turn these handheld devices into a full-fledged team communications device by empowering them with additional UC features such as voice and video calling, messaging and more. They help streamline in-store communications and offer employees with all the tools necessary to accelerate the flow of information within the store environment.
For instance, it facilitates store associates to take outbound calls while “on the floor” or transfer calls between departments. And all this without incurring additional costs to change or update existing infrastructure and without endpoints being deployed on legacy devices.
Centralized management and administration to determine device usage
What compounds the complexity of utilizing these handheld devices is that they are not assigned to specific store associates, so a login mechanism is required to determine which store and department is the device being utilized in. That’s why a UC deployment would also potentially be a challenge in case the store has multiple locations across countries. Customized retail solutions provided by UC market leaders tackles this challenge in an innovative manner. For instance, they provide centralized management that include custom softphone clients for the company’s handheld computers and a carrier-grade management platform for distribution, configuration, analytics and remote support.
CounterPath is one of the biggest market leaders in UC technology and its softphone clients are revolutionizing how retailers address advancements in communication technology to enhance customer service and experiences. Its Unified Communications (UC) solutions have been recognized as an industry and user favorite. Their popular Bria® softphone suite of clients enable secure VoIP audio and video calling, messaging, presence and collaboration tools across multiple devices and operating systems.
Their Bria Mobile can be a powerful device for retailers. Designed with a customized user interface that would make the softphone easy to login, their solution enables call transfer and even offers to shut off features that are not required or lock down certain software settings. This ensures that sales associates have access to only the communication tools they need, thus allowing you to streamline activities on the device.
CounterPath’s award-winning Stretto Platform™ is a carrier-grade provisioning, messaging, collaboration, analytics and mobility experience enhancement platform. Its Provisioning Module offers a login/logout system which enables to determine which store associate is using the device or specifically from which department is it being used. Imagine this — when a store associate starts their day, they could simply pick up a device, choose their store and department and be ready to receive calls. And you would be able to streamline and monitor their communications from one single interface. A great way to streamline team communications, isn't it?
Stretto Provisioning provides management and administration of Bria Mobile clients as well; enabling a scalable, centralized solution. As store teams grow, or updates or upgrades are needed, operations staff can push them out from one location instead of having to visit individual store locations, saving time, effort and operational expenses.
The Stretto Platform is also responsible for gathering data with the User Experience Metrics (UEM) Module and facilitating remote troubleshooting with the Help Desk Module. These modules compliment each other as UEM provides valuable insight into end user behaviours and experiences, including call quality as well. Help Desk enables administrators to access an associates Bria client remotely (with their permission) to solve any issues in real-time. By providing operations staff with these features, it reduces the strain on resources.
Benefits of implementing an integrated communications solution
To summarize, deploying a mobile solution for handheld computers enables retailers to lower their expenses by reducing the amount of operations resources and time needed to support the solution. It enables flexibility and efficient use of employee resources. It helps enhance customer service as store associates become faster and more efficient at answering customer inquiries and streamlining calls between departments. Ultimately, it enables an elevated customer experience by accelerating purchase decisions and thereby a substantial increase in retail revenue.
Looking to transform your retail communications? Get started with CounterPath’s innovative retail solutions and learn how they can help you deliver the seamless omnichannel experience that your customers expect: