31 May Retail Digital Signage: Its Potential is Limited Only by Your Imagination (and Hopefully Not Your Network)
Digital Signage Isn’t Just Signage That’s Digital
Oh no, it’s so much more. According to a Cisco IBSG study, over 40% of shoppers say that digital displays change what they buy, because relevant information is provided near the point of purchase. The result? Retailers can generate higher brand awareness and sales uplift.
When you give creative retailers the ability to combine all kinds of data with an information delivery platform, the potential use cases are almost limitless. You can personalize the experience to help shoppers find the perfect, fit, color, configuration, etc. for them. You can promote high-margin up-sells based on real-time inventory. You can provide product details based on which items are picked up by in-store browsers. You can “interact” with passersby to bring in more foot traffic. The list goes on and on.
The Components of a Digital Signage Strategy
At the heart of your digital signage strategy is the content. This is what you’ll be displaying and the types of functionality that will be needed. Of course, you’ll need hardware, which consists of the screens as well as mounts, media players, etc. And you need the software, which is the platform for creating, deploying, and managing the content. And finally, you need connectivity to deliver the content from the management system—which itself may need to connect to other systems for real-time data if you’re delivering dynamic content—to your screens.
The connectivity piece may not be as exciting to plan as the content strategy, but it’s no less critical. If your digital signage plan requires you to connect disparate systems and transmit massive volumes of data, it can put a tremendous strain on your network infrastructure.
Connectivity Considerations for Digital Signage
You’ll need to develop a technology plan to support your digital signage strategy. There are a lot of questions you need to answer to be able to build an infrastructure that will support your digital signage needs, including, but certainly not limited to:
- Will content and screens be managed locally or remotely?
- What kinds of content—type, resolution, length, etc.—will you be using?
- How quickly does the content need to be delivered?
- How often will the content be updated?
- Do you need to set up zones to display different content in different departments within a store?
- Are multiple locations using the same content, or will it differ from store to store?
- What network connections are available at each location?
- Are there caching or other strategies you can employ to minimize the impact on bandwidth?
All of this information will help you determine the connectivity, wireless, backup, and security needs for your digital signage implementation. No matter what that plan looks like, here are a few best practices to keep in mind:
- Have a dedicated network switch for your signage.
- Run your data and power cables during construction, if possible.
- Plan ahead—make sure you build an infrastructure that will continue to support your digital signage strategy as it evolves over time.
BCM One Can Help You Get Your Infrastructure Digital Signage-Ready
When you work with BCM One, you get a trusted partner who will collaborate with you to ensure every retail location has the infrastructure you need to support your digital signage strategy. Contact us to learn how BCM One can help you.