Today’s brick-and-mortar retailers are facing an onslaught of competition from their online cousins. Industry analysts call this the “Amazon effect”. Retailers are being challenged as never before to attract and engage their customer base. Digital signage is providing retailers with a cost-effective power tool to help them meet these challenges.

In the past printed ads formed the heart of the in-store customer message. Retailers relied on their in-store print messages to make customers aware of new products, promotions and most importantly, to drive sales. Unfortunately, in the social media age, where key trends change constantly, customers have become accustomed to rich media and trendy video presentations.

Enter digital signage, with its ability to change message content on the fly, schedule in-store ads and promotions based on time-of-day or daily sales goals. Create a powerful sales channel using rich multimedia and high definition video. Digital signage provides retailers a powerful tool to capture and engage the attention of today’s fickle customer.

Costs and ROI
For both print and digital signage scenarios there are costs to consider. In the case of the print-based approach you have recurring printing fees, along with the costs for content creation. With digital signage you essentially have a one-time cost for the hardware and a small recurring service/maintenance cost. With the advent of low-cost PC sticks you can achieve a hardware cost under $100 per TV point.

Content creation cost will be comparatively less using digital signage as most signage authoring tools can be used by less expensive in-house staff. Just compare the cost of employing an outside graphics designer to in-house staff using off-the-shelf software like Adobe Photoshop or even Microsoft PowerPoint to create digital signage content. Considering that most new signage are in fact small changes on existing designs, the real cost saving with in-house content development can be significant.

Every digital signage TV point is completely versatile: you can display the same or multiple customer messages. Contrast this with print display which can only display a single message at a time. With digital signage change your message content at-will, based on timely sales objectives or with the launch of a new promotional campaign. There’s simply no comparison to a static print board that must be taken down/replaced with each message change.

The Engaging Power of Interactivity
Nothing engages customers more than the power of touch. With the addition of a low-cost touch screen overlays for your TV, you are able to offer customers an interactive in-store experience. Build effective customer loyalty programs. Place in-store guides, daily promotions and new product news to customers at your customer’s fingertips. Entice customers with prize drawings or special pricing if they enter their email address.

Embrace Change, Stay Ahead
The race to capture, keep and expand your customer base has already started. The winners of this demanding race will take a careful look at the competitive landscape and pick sensible, cost-effective tools that give them the needed edge to win.

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