From Store Maps to Real-time Navigation

With Waze and Google Maps, outdoor navigation has now become an integral part of our everyday lives. As our reliance on navigation and location technologies grows, it’s only natural that they become available indoors, as well. 

The top retailers in the U.S. have picked up on this trend and started providing store maps for their shoppers, which is the basis and first step for enabling in-store navigation. Notable companies like Kroger, Walmart, and The Home Depot have all integrated in-store mapping into their customer experience, the result being a faster, easier, and more convenient shopping experience. 

Kroger has Store Mode, which helps buyers locate hard-to-find items through the use of a static map:

Source: Kroger mobile app

The Home Depot recently launched a Product Locator Tool feature within its mobile app. The tool helps shoppers find items in individual aisles and also allows buyers to check inventory availability before coming to the store:

Source: The Home Depot website

Walmart’s Store Assistant helps buyers locate any item, build smart shopping lists, check prices, and get updates on all relevant store information. Easily accessed through the Walmart app, the store assistant checks inventory before you even leave your house and stays with you until completing your quick checkout with Walmart Pay.

Source: Walmart YouTube

While retailers are beginning to understand the value of store maps and navigation features, they are still limited while only using static maps.

Here are 4 ways in which real-time navigation can elevate static maps

1) With Oriient’s indoor navigation, unlike static maps, customers get their in-store location on the maps (blue-dot/“You Are Here” indication), with real-time updates. This allows shoppers to understand where they are, which way to go, and to follow an easy route to their desired products, that keeps updating as they go

Indoor Navigation without and Indoor Positioning System

Without IPS. Source: MapsPeople

Indoor Navigation with real time positioning

With IPS. Source: MapsPeople

 

2) Real-time navigation can also allow for location-based proximity marketing. This lets retailers provide relevant offers at the most opportune times and in the best locations throughout the shopping journey. 

3) Data generated by each customer journey gives retailers critical insights to drive marketing and operational efficiency. When retailers see that shoppers are spending more time in one area or walking certain routes, they can pivot their marketing and layout strategies to better engage shoppers.

4) For retailers that have grocery pickers, selecting groceries for shoppers, real-time navigation can reduce picking time and ensure that no items are missed, driving revenue for the retailer and delivery company alike.

 

Here’s an example of a shopper using real-time navigation on Instacart’s app:

Going from Maps to Apps in Real-time 

By adding real-time search and navigation to their apps, retailers can strengthen the customer-retailer bond and grow individual shopping baskets, further increasing their bottom lines for the long run.

Retailers like Kroger, The Home Depot, and Walmart are taking the necessary steps to ensure that the foundation for real-time navigation is sturdy. With Oriient, all retailers can finally make their real-time navigation dreams come true and improve the shopper and associate experience.

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