No matter where consumers ultimately commit to a purchase ― whether it be online or in person ― they’re often influenced by business promotional efforts. Digital signage is a powerful tool to capitalize on these interactions.
It’s hard to ignore that online shopping has overtaken many areas of retail, providing ease of convenience, customization and choice. We see e-commerce growing in popularity year-over-year, with sales expected to reach $4.8 trillion by 2021. And it isn’t really surprising, especially considering recent events that have pushed more consumers to embrace online purchases.
However, brick-and-mortar stores are still essential and relevant to consumers, especially for those who want to touch or try on products, those who need an immediate purchase or who simply enjoy the shopping experience as a social, enjoyable part of their daily lives. In fact, a report generated by the IHL Group reveals that brick-and-mortar stores are anticipated to be involved in 81% of all retail sales in 2021.
So, as consumer patterns continue to shift over the next few months, what we’re most likely going to see is not a “this or that” situation, but more of a hybridization of both online and retail shopping.
Why put signage at the storefront?
A study conducted by Oracle NetSuite shows that Millennials and Gen Z consumers don’t necessarily enjoy interacting with retail associates while they browse retail shops. But they still want to get pertinent information about product details, discounts, deals, availability and pricing.
They could turn to their phones and pull up a browser to conduct some research, or they could simply consult the digital signage your business has strategically placed throughout the store for real-time updates.
The ability to try, experience and visualize products within the store and see expanded options in an interactive experience goes beyond what’s available exclusively online or through an application. Immersive experiences address the needs and preferences of today’s consumers. And, if these in-store displays can mirror online advertisements, there’s an even greater chance of consumer retention and recognition.
- Statistics show that 8/10 shoppers will enter a store after viewing a digital sign.
- 92% of shoppers say real-time product availability impacts where they shop, and signage helps provide this information upfront.
- According to Digital Signage Today, displays capture 400% more views than static ads.
- Digital signage is engaging and attracts more visual shoppers.
- Entertaining content near checkout lines can decrease perceived wait time by 33%.
- Signage can provide increased visibility into consumer shopping behavior through smart analytics.
Let’s get creative.
There isn’t a lack of digital signage in the world today, but there are improvements that can be made. Some experiences turn out to be lackluster or overwhelming due to aggressive repetition, miscalculated formulas and unpleasing graphics. With strong competition, being seen as forgettable or unlikeable isn’t an option. It’s important for a company to distinguish the value that it offers through unique experiences that stand out and create excitement.
Video walls are one of the easiest ways that companies can grab the attention of consumers. Various lighting, size and mounting options create customizable choices. Businesses can also choose to place smaller video displays inside or outside, depending on the goal. Some consumers today may be in a hurry to get in and out as quickly as possible; signage inside can help direct them to key products with intelligent, interactive wayfinding capabilities. Other consumers may be more willing to leisurely walk around shopping centers or plazas; signage outside can display vivid imagery to catch their attention and increase foot traffic.
Questions your displays may be able to address:
- Where can I find the product I came here for? Directional signage can be used to showcase store maps.
- Which brand is offering the best deal right now? Promotional signage can run custom ads based on current trends, deals or partnerships to influence the point of decision.
- How would this look in my home? In a different color? Artificially intelligent signage provides immersive experiences by creating models of living rooms to show how a couch would look, or mirroring the image of the consumer to show how a shirt would look… the possibilities are endless.
- I like both items, but I can only buy one. Which is best? Interactive signage enables consumers to immediately scan a product and pull up its details for easier comparison.
- Is there anything I’ve forgotten? Checkout signage can give customers last chance moments to engage with key offerings, invite them to return again or remind them visit the online store to view additional information.
Types of displays
Direct View LED
In traditional LCD, tiny LEDs illuminate the crystal display layer around the edges of the display. This is what’s referred to as backlighting. With Direct View technology, this layer is removed, and individual LEDs provide their own emissive light directly, eliminating the need for a separate backlight. The appeal is best for distance viewing and outdoor displays.
Direct View LEDs let you play to your imagination. They can cover curved surfaces and build large canvases out of smaller displays. They also have a life expectancy of 10 years or more compared to LCDs that can live three to four years.
Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) is technology that uses a layer of organic molecules to produce color when an electrical current passes through. This completely eliminates the need for backlighting, allowing for the thinnest of displays and the production of true blacks in artwork. Curved or convex, OLED displays provide amazing contrast and color for attention-grabbing imagery.
Preparing for tomorrow
So, as your retail business gets ready to open shop with a revamped marketing intent, consider the many benefits of digital signage. Remember that the imagery and videos you choose to display need to be engaging, exciting and meaningful ― not repetitive, irrelevant and distracting. And invest in reliable display technology that promotes clear, beautiful colors and pixilation so that you can confidently attract consumers and reinvent your brand in a new light.