Smart Stores

Rebooting the retail store through in-store automation

I’d rather be shopping – in stores with automation technologies

Brick-and-mortar retailers have a problem. Customers expect the efficiency and convenience of an online experience when they visit their stores – if they visit their stores. Luckily, automation is here to save the day. It can stamp out customer pain points, making physical stores more attractive. So why do only 40% of retailers consider automation a strategic imperative?

A strategic imperative

We wanted to find out. For the latest report from the Capgemini Research Institute – Smart Stores – Rebooting the retail store through in-store automation – we talked to over 5,000 consumers, and 500 retail executives. We learned that:

  • Automation appeals to consumers – 66% believe it can solve challenges such as long checkout lines
  • It can bring significant benefits – 46% of consumers are willing to shift their online purchase from a wholly online retailer to a retailer with stores that use automation technology
  • To scale, retailers need consumer trust and confidence – but a significant dissonance in perception persists between retailers and consumers
  • Following specific best practices will allow retailers to drive scale and capitalize on the benefits of automation.

Game-changer or marginal play?

Automation offers clear benefits to both consumers and retailers. By solving the challenges they encounter and creating a positive experience, it can entice shoppers back into stores, thus staving off competition from digital natives while reducing costs and making employees more productive.

Automation is a game-changer for retailers that prioritize it as a strategic imperative, view it through consumers’ eyes, learn from their data, build an automation operating model, and secure employees’ buy-in through training and reskilling. For the rest, it is merely a marginal play.

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Report – Smart Stores

File size: 2.76 MB File type: PDF

Infographic – Smart S...

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Sound Bites

Sacha Berendji, Retail – operations and property director at Marks & Spencer

Our customers – especially those who come to us for lunch – are so busy, any tech that can speed up the shopping experience is a massive benefit to them.

Gerrit-Jan Steenbergen, Group retail technology director, (CIO) at A. S. Watson

Our consumers do not want face recognition, so the technology we are using requires a customer to use our app.

Key Takeaways

59%

of consumers who have previously visited stores with automation would shift purchases to a store with automation technologies if they had a positive experience

66%

of consumers believe that automation can improve their shopping experience by solving the challenges they face when they shop in retail stores, such as long queues for checkout and payment

69%

of consumers overall prefer to shop with retailers that use automation technology to reduce food waste

About the Capgemini Research Institute

Capgemini Research Institute

Capgemini’s #1 ranked in-house think tank on all things digital

Experts

Kees Jacobs

Expert in Consumer Products and Retail

Jerome Buvat

Expert in Digital Transformation & Strategy, Strategy & Transformation

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