Have you ever been grocery shopping and had no clue where to find canned pineapple slices or some other product? Like, where are the 50 inch plasmas in Best Buy, Italian cookbooks at Barnes & Noble, or dry erase markers at Staples?
If you're like me, you spend half of your shopping day just trying to find the items you went to the store to buy. With all the hype about the new iPhone (with the compass in it), I stared at mine and screamed, "Lead me to the pineapple slices!"
In the e-commerce world, we're all figuring out what multichannel applications can be built for this new breed of phone. Amazon and others let you buy products from the phone, and many applications point you to nearby attractions, such as restaurants and movies.
Meanwhile, most retail stores are figuring out how the mobile channel can augment the Web channel or how the mobile channel can provide a connection between online and offline.
That's all fantastic and very important. But business channels are like houses. You need to get the houses right, then build the pathways between them.
Let's think about the physical stores as a channel unto themselves for a moment. What kind of applications would be interesting strictly for in-store use?
There are probably a million ideas, but here are some of the more obvious ones:
And a Million More
There are a million uses for customized applications specifically for shopping in a store. Think about it, and you can find a useful application that will make your in-store shopping experience better and cut down on customer service costs.
Until next time...
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