Robots equipped with machine vision and AI offer new, exciting benefits to retail. From time and cost savings to operational efficiency and prompt customer service, retail stores are finding it easier to make sure customers leave the store with a positive experience.
Machine Vision and AI Improves the Customer Experience
Many different factors influence how customers feel about their experience in a retail store. A positive experience may convince the customer to return and shop at the store again. To deliver a positive experience, retailers must take the following into account:
- Cleanliness of the store
- Stock levels
- Store security management
- Store temperature
- Placing items on the right shelves
These factors must all be supervised, controlled, and consistent. To eliminate mistakes caused by humans and to free humans of monotonous and dull tasks, robots with machine vision systems and AI can be deployed. They first take pictures of aisles and the store in general to map the space and then analyze and interpret unclean areas that they then clean by themselves.
They also capture pictures at entry points and can interpret when customers enter the store and then greet them. They can even photograph new cartons, analyze the items in the box, and move them to the right shelves. Managers are then able to perform tasks that require more complex thinking, such as strategic planning.
Automatic Checkout Systems Save Time and Cost
The checkout process can be a trying one for customers. They’ve already chosen what they want. Now they must wait in a long line to pay. Robots can automate and accelerate the checkout process using machine vision and AI.
One system has customers place their items in robotic baskets that scan the items. The customer simply places the basket at the automated checkout, prompting the system to collect the merchandise data and provide a bill. The customer pays and the system puts the items into a bag.
Amazon Go is a popular store that takes another approach. After installing the Amazon Go app, customers are provided with a personal barcode. Hundreds of machine vision cameras equipped with AI track the customer’s visit and everything put into their basket. Customers simply walk out of the store and they are charged for what they’ve taken.
Neighborhood Goods, an experimental store in Texas, is using machine vision systems to track consumer behavior and aggregate statistical data that can be leveraged to make better marketing decisions in the future. Its owners want to know how and why customers act the way that they do.
Attend CRAV.ai to learn about the exciting technological advances in collaborative robots, advanced vision, and artificial intelligence.