Velocity to the fore with new tech to keep shoppers on the High Street
A Belfast-based technology firm which is a leader in retail solutions has held an event in Rio-Brazil in Victoria Square to showcase how the future of shopping has already arrived.
Velocity Worldwide’s clients include retail property management firms Standard Life Investments, and Cushman and Wakefield, plus brands such as L’Occitane, Topshop and major food retail outlets in the UK and US, including Spar, Family Shopper and Dairy Queen.
The company has developed Darius® for Retail, a shopper data, personalisation and insight software platform that integrates with mobile and in-store proximity technology, such as Wi-Fi and beacons. It can be used to create personalised shopping experiences and marketing campaigns for shoppers who opt in.
The technology has the ability to integrate with new and existing in-instore infrastructure such as Automatic Number Plate Recognition, Point of Sales systems and even dynamic lighting. It can use digital signage to recognise customers nearby and display tailored messages according to their preferences. Products can also be equipped with beacon sensors that detect who picks up a product, prompting a discount offer to be sent directly to their mobile phone in-box.
The results have been dramatic with retailers achieving double-digit growth in footfall, basket spend and the quality of their customer data.
Enda McShane, CEO and founder of Velocity Worldwide, said:
“Perceived wisdom is that we’re in an era which is witnessing the death of the High Street – that couldn’t be further from the truth. 94% of retail happens in-store and while the public values the convenience of online shopping, they still want the traditional shopping experience.
“The problem for many retailers is that they don’t really understand who their customers are. They’re also unsure about how best to utilise technology to enhance their shopping experience and create an ongoing conversation with them.
“Velocity has built and developed a $20m bespoke platform that allows retailers to develop a granular understanding of customers’ preferences and behaviours, and then create a personalised shopping experience using in-store displays, e-mail, mobile and other multi-channel communications. Our Darius® for Retail platform not only allows retailers to collect and segment shopper data, but to do something meaningful with it. The end result is more customers, spending more, more often.”
Belfast fashion retailer Rio-Brazil adopted Velocity’s Darius platform in 2016 and its customer database has grown by 36% as a result.
Stevie Simpson, owner of Rio-Brazil, said:
“Customers will always want great value, quality products, but they also want to have quality relationships. Thanks to mobile telecoms and our connected world, retailers have the opportunity to really get to know their customers again.
“In-store technology is just one aspect of a changing retail environment where it’s now possible to communicate with customers pre-store, in-store and post-store. By blending digital and physical spaces, traditional bricks-and-mortar shops can reinvent themselves and continue to prosper.
“Communicating effectively with our customers always proved difficult and we typically averaged email open rates of around 8%. With Darius, we’ve been able to build up robust profiles of our customers and as a result, communicate more effectively with them. Since implementing Darius, we’ve seen our email open rates grow in excess of 20%.”
Velocity Worldwide recently won three national Revo Purple Apple awards for marketing campaigns with shopping centres in Cheltenham, Newbury and Crawley. These awards recognise and reward effective shopping and town centre marketing within the UK retail property sector. The business also picked up the award for the ‘Innovation in Digital’ category at this year’s DANI Awards for its ‘Our Fan’ engagement campaign for The Basketball Hall of Fame Belfast Classic 2017.