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Shop mannequins move into the digital age

Date: August 13, 2014

Category: Industry news

New measures are being taken by retailers to ensure that their in-store displays are more interactive for customers.

The retail system will work in conjunction with a new smartphone app. Once a consumer with the application enabled on their mobile passes within 50 metres of one of the smart dummies, this will be registered by its RFID beacon, which will in turn send an alert to the shopper. This message will contain details about the garments that the mannequin is wearing.

If the shopper is interested, they are then able to find out additional information about the products, such as the brands presented and how much they will cost to purchase. A link to the retailer’s mobile commerce (m-commerce) website will also be included to allow for easy transactions. Alternatively, if the customer prefers, there will also be information on how to find the item in store.

While the technology is not new, having also been adapted for use in such attractions as art galleries and museums, this is the first time that RFID tags will be used on the high street for this function. The mannequins are currently being piloted in a number of locations, including Aberdeen and London, with stores Bentalls and Hawes & Curtis also in on the initiative.

The tags will remain active even once the store has closed, so that people looking in the shop windows can also benefit. If anything catches their eye, they can forward details to friends and even receive additional offers.