Growth has slowed for retail e-commerce post-pandemic. But overall it is still very much on the up. With various factors driving it, including convenience, faster fulfilment, and better technology, it’s an opportunity retailers need to make the most of.
E-commerce as a percentage of retail sales across regions
Source – Morgan Stanley
With online competition being incredibly fierce, a poor or confusing experience can be a killer for your brand. This is forcing retailers to rethink how to make the online experience easier and seamless for all their customers.
Yet only having one way of using this clever technology to engage increasingly diverse consumers online will simply not cut it. To retain the loyalty of a much broader customer base, retailers need to offer the right mix of channels, services and apps to suit different shopping preferences – but with the same standard of frictionless shopping experience.
This omnichannel approach to retailing provides a seamless customer experience whether the consumer is shopping online from a mobile device or a laptop from the comfort of their sofa, or is physically present in a retail store.
Apps are not the only option to engage customers
Combine the spending power of Millennials and Gen Z with their willingness to use mobile phones and social media to shop and you are going to get some big mobile commerce numbers. According to Insider Intelligence retail Mcommerce sales hit $359.32 billion in 2021.
When consumers are shopping on smart devices, mobile or tablets, the perceived wisdom in the retail sector has generally been that a native app is the only satisfactory way to fully engage with consumers.
However, native app development can be costly and time consuming. And it usually requires significant marketing support to generate uptake and acceptance on a commercially viable scale.
There’s no denying native apps have gained popularity., But truly, innovative retailers are taking a multi-dimensional approach to broaden consumer engagement by offering different channels with the same convenient features.
Web-based scanning invisibly bridges the gap
A web-based barcode scanner is a quick and alternative way for retailers to add value to customer experience. Particularly if they don’t want to develop an app or want to appeal to customers who have ‘app fatigue’.
Enabling scanning from a website improves the user experience when shopping in-store in many ways by saving consumers time and effort. They can look up products, add items to a shopping list, access product information and register their loyalty card or warranties without having to enter long sequences of numbers or product names.
Infrequent visitors to a store, or customers requiring only a few items will find web-based scanning more convenient than downloading an app.
A powerful web-based scanner helps retailers strike a balance between experience, expense and effort by;
- Adding affordable high-performance scanning to their website
- Avoiding the complications and cost of a developing a native app
- Creating enhanced customer convenience through web-based shopping
- Providing customers with the same experience as a native app
By integrating scanning functionality into a web app, with no set-up or app download needed, users simply browse to your website and start scanning on any camera-enabled smart device.
Best practice to implement web-based scanning
Here’s our top three best practice tips from our experience of implementing web-based scanning for clients in store and online:
A great user experience is everything
Add scanning to an existing website or web app at the right point of the customer journey to enhance the experience. It must help shoppers browse, shop and purchase products intuitively and easily.
Focus on the omnichannel experience
The customer experience between channels should be harmonious and effortless. If you already offer a native scanning app, adding scanning functionality to your website for the same process extends its reach.
Test scanning in real-world conditions
Reliable scanning is paramount. If it doesn’t work on all items first time, every time, your customers will feel let down and won’t use it again.
Test your web-based scanning to ensure it’s fast and accurate in a variety of real-life conditions, such as in bad light, with glare on packaging, with damaged labels, and at challenging angles and distances. Finally, ensure your web-based scanning software supports all barcode symbologies (such as UPC or EAN) on the products in your stores.
Scandit Smart Data Capture meets the toughest challenges
Until recently, there haven’t been solutions available to implement truly enterprise-grade web-based barcode scanning, but that’s no longer the case.
Scandit Barcode Scanner SDK provides easy integration of high-performance barcode scanning technology into any web application across a broad spectrum of e-commerce platforms.
Scandit Smart Data Capture for retailers consistently outperforms other solutions for scanning speed and accuracy. Mobile shoppers do not need the very latest model or highest spec mobile device or laptop. Even on low-end devices, customer scanning with Scandit copes with difficult angles, poor light, varying distances and even damaged or blurred barcodes.