The idea is to offer consumers up to date customer reviews as they browse around shops to let them make informed decisions about the products in front of them on the shelves. The hope is that this will actually encourage people to buy, and at the same time allow retailers to gather information about the browsing and buying habits of visitors to the shops.
The technology to make the system work does represent an investment on the part of the retailers. Consumers download the app, and as far as they see, they simlply see product information and reviews live on the screen as they browse around the shop, looking at the products. The screen will contiually refresh to show information on the products that they are looking at as they move through the shop. Greentape claim the information is accurate to about 3 feet. The way it works is that the shop will install beacons around the store which transmit the information to the app from the supporting software. So the information available is localised to the store you are in, and is only available in stores that have signed up for the system.
The display will show reviews of the products, with those with the highest ratings shown at the top of the list. The CEO of Greentape, Chris Daltas, emphasises that this is not a rewards system, it’s purely about what user reviews exist for particular products, and what reviews of their own shoppers would like to leave. This way the database is routinely refreshed and kept up to date with what shoppers are thinking.
So why would consumers use the app? The phrase being used is “empowered shopping experiences”, meaning shoppers get the chance to have their say and feel part of the retail process. The merchants then benefit because this engagement helps trigger buying behaiour and helps capture data to identify shopping trends.
Still not convinced that the system will sell? Here are some facts and figures from Greentapes’ own research:
- Consumer ratings are the most trusted source of product information.
- 80% of all consumer product ratings are positive.
- Consumer ratings improve conversion, increase order size and decrease returns.
- 84% of shoppers would like to see a consumer rating before making a purchase.
- 63% of consumers are more likely to shop where ratings exist.
- Positive ratings double conversion.
- On average, ratings improve conversion by 14.2%
- After seeing a rating, a consumer is 178% more likely to buy that product.
- Products with ratings, on average, have a 20% lower return rate.
- A product with a high rating is 40% more likely to convert than the same product on discount
So it’s a good sell for the merchants, it’ll be interesting to see how the buying public responds.