Microsoft is releasing several new capabilities through Microsoft Cloud for Retail designed to help retail organizations communicate while digitizing the physical store and the front-line worker experience, including new computer-vision powered autonomous store offerings and management tools.
The new offerings, detailed in a blog, as part of Microsoft’s retail industry cloud offering, come in advance of the National Retail Federation Big Show 2023 taking place next week in New York City. The company says the new tools are designed to help make retailers more resilient by leveraging a mix of advanced technologies.
Microsoft’s new Smart Store Analytics solution is designed to give retailers e-commerce-level shopper analytics for the physical space. The solution comes as partnership with AiFi, which Microsoft calls “the world’s most broadly deployed computer vision-powered autonomous store operator.”
The offering combines a brick-and-mortar retail establishment with smart technology to track shoppers and shopping behavior from product discovery through purchase while providing customer signals and insights to help retailers optimize store layout, product recommendations, shelf placement and inventory, writes Microsoft’s Corporate Vice President of Global Retail and Consumer Goods Industries Shelly Bransten in a blog.
“Our vision is to become the smart store solution for retailers worldwide,” Bransten writes.
Also now being offered to retailers is Store Operations Assist, which Bransten says give store associates a platform to better serve and engage customers with single-pane-of-glass access to operational activities such as curbside fulfillment to customer service scenarios in the physical store.
In addition, leaders will have management access to operational store activities with dashboard-based analytics and insights.
Announced in a separate blog, other retail features being released include enhancements to Teams Walkie Talkie, out-of-the-box applications for retail business processes, shift management tools, new Microsoft Viva connections pre-configurations for frontline workers, Viva Engage Stories, shared device mode support, new Outlook features and more.
Read the Microsoft blog to learn more.
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