Digital Kiosks: The Future of Retail Signage
Guest Post: by Arrow Electronics
Today’s businesses are increasingly using digital signage to promote their brand and distribute their content. In fact, the digital signage market in the United States is expected to reach $6.9 billion by 2025, growing by 6.5% every year, according to ResearchandMarkets.com.
The reasons for this growth are clear. The digitization of signage aligns with the technology trend of digital transformation – using digital technologies to create better customer experiences. With the advent of the internet and mobile devices, consumers are more accustomed to interacting with content on screens. Enhancing the shopper experience is crucial for retail centers to maintain their competitive edge. As more and more shoppers go online for their needs, modern mall operators know that they need to not only improve their customer experience but also capitalize on existing foot traffic and keep people coming back.
Digital signs are an exciting way to deliver real-time content in a variety of settings, including shopping centers and retail stores. Static signs are being replaced with interactive digital walls and directory kiosks that can provide consumers with what they need when they want it – the mantra of the digital world.
Shopping center operators looking to employ digital directory kiosks must embark upon a multi-step journey that includes design, manufacturing, and management of hardware, software and content; integration support; and connectivity across wireless networks. Arrow Electronics helps companies navigate each of these steps, delivering a solution that fits individual needs and ultimately improves business outcomes. Our best-in-class solutions are delivered in partnership with TouchSource, a Colorado-based company, and leader in smart signage technology, that manufactures turnkey digital directories, public directory and information kiosks, wayfinding, elevator solutions, and video walls, to bring its innovative digital network into the shopping center market. Using the TouchSource retail solution, malls can engage customers through curated content that supports its retailers, creates easy intuitive wayfinding for shoppers, and accurately targets its consumers.
Features and Capabilities
Static mall directories typically include a map that identifies the shopper’s location with a “You Are Here” mark, and a laundry list of retailers under categories such as “Apparel,” “Food” and “Sports & Outdoors.”
Digital signs and directory kiosks provide a number of modern, customizable features and capabilities that better suit the needs of today’s digital-savvy consumer. What’s on display is only limited to your imagination. Here’s what digital signage has to offer:
- An interactive display that responds to customer requests. Consumers want to find what they want, when they need it – now, they can have that same best-in-class customer experience in retail centers.
- Interactive maps that provide custom wayfinding. A keyboard search bar function, retailers organized on the map by category and flashing “You Are Here” markers make it easier to find what consumers want quickly.
- Access to real-time events, offers and retailer discounts. Full-color retailer profile pages with bright graphics can provide listings for deals and offers, giving consumers incentives to visit the store.
- Mobile-ready solutions that allow visitors to grab maps or offers. Now, consumers can download a mobile mall map directly on their personal device or grab and redeem a retailer’s discount deal, via QR code, text or email.
- Easy opportunities to call concierge or security. Help is available at the touch of a button.
- Live social media feeds. Mall operators and retailers can communicate with visitors using popular social media platforms. Instantly displaying feeds for announcements, photos, and information.
- Consumer data capturing for marketing purposes. Retailers can enable consumers to register on the spot and obtain their information for future communications.
- Remote updating. Displays can be updated in seconds from your office instead of having to contact a specialist for service.
- Actionable analytics across usage, demographics, and preference. Each kiosk stores valuable information such as usage, profile demographics of engaged and passive users, as well as specific opportunities and recommendations.
TouchSource Retail Kiosk
TouchSource is a dominant provider and pioneer of turnkey digital solutions in the retail space, delivering business simplicity and elegant designs to customers large and small. TouchSource has strategically engaged in retail to bring its innovative digital network into the shopping center market. The customizable indoor and outdoor retail kiosks are capable of promoting messaging specific to stores, restaurants, and entertainment. This enables retail centers to support their own business and utilize the collected analytics to create messaging tailored to their shoppers.
• Integrated Wayfinding: The mall directory with laundry lists of fine-printed stores is no longer acceptable to the modern shopper. Integrated wayfinding allows users to easily navigate through large and complicated malls to find exactly what they’re searching for, fast. Users can search for specific stores and are provided with scalable maps based on their needs. With the TouchSource solution, users can click on individual stores, restaurants, and entertainment for more information, and can easily download wayfinding maps to their phone to guide them directly to their destination. All mapping is dynamically updated and integrated into the TouchSource kiosk through the mall’s website for easy updating and operational simplicity. Marketing and property managers don’t have to worry about keeping maps up to date as this is done automatically through robust integration with marketing content.
• Advertising and Mobile Capabilities: In addition to promoting local businesses, restaurants, and entertainment within a retail center, the TouchSource kiosk also has the capability to integrate national advertising content. TouchSource enables true operational simplicity for the mall and mixed-use operators and owners. By integrating with marketing data through Placewise Digital, integrating mapping through Here Technologies, and proactive monitoring and support, TouchSource enables a mall operator to have an engaging and interactive solution with little effort.
TouchSource takes care of all aspects of content and support and can even help source revenue through 3rd party advertising. TouchSource works with third-party advertising networks to supplement internal content with additional ad-generated revenue not required to be sold by the retail center for added incentives.
• Usage Analytics: The TouchSource Retail kiosk provides actionable analytics with guidance on user insight, overall usage, interaction, and demographics. Analytics can be accessed in real-time using a Google Analytics dashboard that interfaces directly with each unit in the field, allowing administrators to quickly login to obtain data snapshots. Malls gain insight on what their customers are looking for, and the built-in-camera will measure age, gender, and mood while tracking attention time and views while customizing advertising built to a specific demographic. This invaluable data provides many retailers, especially local businesses, with tangible, decision-driving insight into their brand that simply wasn’t attainable until now.
TouchSource is currently exploring video capabilities for its signage, which will feature a sensor system that can enable users to derive analytics such as people counting, customer behavior and activity analysis.
The Arrow Advantage
With a combination of in-house expertise and an extensive partner network, Arrow can deliver a complete retail digital signage solution from TouchSource.
- Seneca Media Players: Arrow’s TouchSource solutions include technology and custom design services from Seneca, an Arrow custom computer manufacturing company. Seneca’s flexible media players power up the data and visualization formats for TouchSource displays.
- Intel Processing: Seneca’s media players feature high-performance Intel core processors, including the Intel Atom X5-Z8300 processor, designed to perform in the most demanding environments.
- eInfochips Sensor Board: Arrow’s eInfochips, a leading global provider of product engineering and semiconductor design services, is designing and building the next-generation sensor board for TouchSource’s digital signage.
With these powerful capabilities, Arrow can deliver a customized solution that meets your specific needs, including design, manufacturing, connectivity, integration, and management of hardware, software, and content.
Key Features to the TouchSource Retail Kiosk by Arrow
- A full turnkey solution including all aspects of software and hardware
- Dual-sided 65” QLED displays with PCAP touch and dynamic brightness
- Fabricated, manufactured, and produced in the USA with the highest end steel and fabrication components
- Integrated proactive support, remote monitoring, and diagnostics
- “No touch” management with full integration to Placewise Digital Marketing API
- Designed and engineered with usability and serviceability at the forefront
- Tailored, integrated ads, offers, and events including offers from National Retailers
- Integration with mobile users through SMS, BLE, QR, NFC, and other emerging formats
- IoT Ready for full integration with a live network of devices
- Integrated and customized wayfinding and mapping
- Outdoor and indoor dual-sided solutions
- Marketing data collection and actionable analytics
The Future is Here
Online shopping has given consumers experiences that are instant and curated to their preferences, but it can’t replace the look, feel and touch experience of brick-and-mortar stores. A full 97% of all consumers say that there is still a need to go into a physical store to shop, according to the National Retail Federation’s Consumer View Winter 2019 survey, but 70% of consumers are asking for a streamlined and simplified in-store experience.
TouchSource retail kiosks are a crucial step in creating a seamless transition between digital demands and real-life experiences. As many retail malls start to incorporate digital signage, wayfinding directories and digital advertising platforms within their centers, TouchSource and Arrow lead the way in creating an innovative solution that fits the needs of an industry in transformation.