Report • 26.06.2024

Intelligent shopping assistant: how can it help in the store?

Practical examples of use in DIY stores and fashion stores

Product search, navigation, shopping basket management and checkout: intelligent shopping assistants can now be integrated into all of these processes in brick-and-mortar stores. But what does this look like in practice? iXtenso took a look at application examples in various stores with Lutz Hollmann-Raabe, COO & CSO of Bütema AG. 

Lutz Hollmann-Raabe smiles into the camera
Lutz Hollmann-Raabe, COO & CSO of Bütema AG
Source: Bütema AG

Many retailers now rely on their own apps. What do you think? 

"Let's be honest: many apps are purchased by retailers, cost a lot and don't have the desired effect. This is because customers are usually lured in with discounts or vouchers and once they have redeemed them, the application disappears into the depths of our smartphones, just like the other 60 apps that we have installed at some point for some purpose - unless we are in the food retail sector, where we shop every day."

KIra works like an app, but isn't one. How can customers use the service?  

"The special thing is that no additional app is required. Customers simply scan a QR code and the non-app opens within seconds and is saved in their browser cache. This makes it particularly quick and easy to get started."

A QR code from the Kira app is scanned.
Source: beta-web

How does the shopping assistant work?

"You can ask the assistant any question that you would otherwise ask the store staff, because the system works with artificial intelligence in the form of Chat GPT and interlinks this knowledge with retail facts, such as the product range in the store."

One person operates the touch mirror with the integrated Kira app...
Source: beta-web
Request from a customer: 

"Show me an outfit for a summer wedding in Mallorca with a 'boho' theme." 

Procedure of the shopping assistant: 

"KIra searches the internet for 'boho', marries this data with product data from the store, asks what size, color variations and fabrics are desired and generates an outfit for the customer to match the request. The suggestions are made up of everything that is available in the store and tells the customer where the product can be found. If there is nothing suitable, alternatives from the retailer's online store are offered."
Request from the customer

"Unfortunately, the size I have here in the changing room doesn't fit. I need the dress one size smaller." 

Procedure of the shopping assistant: 

"The assistant checks the request and sees if the item is available in the store in another size. If this is the case, the sales staff can be notified or can dial into the assistant in the fitting room themselves, see what is needed and can take the item to the customer's changing room. This saves the customer time and improves service. If the product is no longer available in the desired size, the customer is shown alternative suggestions."
Examples of use in the fashion store
Request from the customer: 

"I'm looking for wood screws. Where can I find them?" 

Procedure of the shopping assistant: 

"Kira provides information about the aisle and the shelf where the screws can be found. If customers want more advice, staff can be sent into the aisle. However, employees can also take over Kira's advice independently at any time and continue it personally." 

Requests from customers 

"My shopping cart is full - even with lots of bulky goods. But I still want to pay quickly and conveniently without having to wait long." 

The shopping assistant's approach: 

"Especially in DIY stores, there is often the challenge that the shopping cart is full of large and bulky products. The staff have to go around the trolley to scan it, then the barcode is hidden, you have to clear everything out... With KIra, customers can scan all the products beforehand, then hand the digital shopping cart to the checkout staff via QR code or pay directly at KIra using the usual payment methods. The employees then check the receipt."
Example of use in a DIY store
Katja Laska

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