Robotics In Retail – How Zara Uses AI & Robotics to Automate Order Pickup
The inventions of automation and robotics have plagued many industries, but especially in the retail industry, its impact is beyond imagination. Robots fed with AI or Artificial Intelligence has been taking over most of the jobs that are handling better and faster than humans. From supply chain and logistics to back-office operations, store operations, marketing and sales to customer-facing issues, AI Robotics is driving innovation, and helping improve bottom and top-line results.
According to the reports, Robotics automation in the retail industry was estimated at US $19.4 billion in 2018, and it is predicted to reach 144.93 billion US dollars by 2026, increasing at a CAGR of 28.96 % from the year 2019 to 2026.
In order to be on par with the growing number of robots in the worldwide market, most of the retail firms are adopting several advancing methods to expand their business prospects.
- World’s leading retailers like Amazon own 100,000 robots across the globe at its warehouses to the meet demands of orders.
- Lowe’s has made an in-store robot named ‘LoweBot’ that helps customers with finding products in the store.
- Walmart deployed around 1500 autonomous shelves-cleaning and floor-cleaning robots in its retail stores.
- Best Buy has partnered with PaR Systems in order to launch an automated system named ‘Chloe’.
Also Read: Best Examples of Using AI for Retail Experiences
Zara introduced ai and robotics in retail to speed up online pickup orders
Zara, a famous fashion retailer, has adopted the BOPIS (Buy Online, Pick-Up in Store) or the Click and Collect concept to improve customer experiences. Consumers can place their orders online, and then reach Zara’s brick-and-mortar store to collect their goods either at the customer service or checkout queue.
A more number of customers have preferred to order from online before coming to the store to select their products, and it takes much time to pick up from the queue. In order to avoid the long lines and cut down the waiting time of customers, Zara is aiming to improve its BOPIS process with automation.
The perfect solution to this problem is AI Robots!
To solve the issue for customers encountering long queue, the retail store is introducing a hi-tech solution for its BOPIS or “Click and Collect” service. Artificial Intelligence Robots will fetch the products from the back of the automated retail stores and fasten the in-store collecting process.
Purchasers who have placed the products orders through online can enter or scan code the collection point in store retail. Then, AI Robot searches for the requested order and take it to the dropbox where consumers can collect it. Zara has tested this technology at first at a Spain store near its headquarters, and it has worked most efficiently.
In addition to creating in store experience retail with AI robots, Zara has also launched a completely digitally enhanced store called ‘Pop-up Store’ in a shopping mall in the UK. The Mall is located in 2,150-square-foot which has both men’s and women’s clothes. But, surprisingly, customers have access to only online shopping.
Also, a retail store located in London’s Westfield Stratford mall will help purchasers collect for online orders. The automated store employees use Smartphones to assist consumers purchase. Those two customers place orders before 2.00 PM can have a chance to collect their goods the same day. Remaining customers who place orders after 2.00 PM should wait for next day to pick-up orders, by paying through Bluetooth credit cards.
Adding to this, In addition, the Zara automation has offered amazing features like item recommendation system that functions with a mirror. Consumers can scan their product at mirror using Radio Frequency Identification, and the system displays other products that pair well with the correct size and chosen outfit.
In conclusion, I’d like to state that Artificial Intelligence and Robotics technologies are on the rise in the retail industry. Retail stores are continuing to incorporate AI tools for better market demand. We believe that AI is transforming the way we purchase products online, and it impacts customer satisfaction, transactions, efficiency, and business growth.
If you own a retail store and you want help with AI and robotic technology, Contact us.
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