Foot scanning can open up a new world of opportunities for shoppers and retailers, providing unparalleled insight into a consumer’s individual fit. But until now, the challenge has been finding a comprehensive, compact, integrated foot scanner that empowers retailers with the data they need to translate information into incremental sales. That’s all about to change thanks to the launch of Aetrex’s newest innovation: Albert 2.
The Albert 2 is an easy-to-use, all-in-one scanner that looks beautiful and modern in stores and does everything a retailer could need from a foot scanning technology.
“I remember the days when I used to have to carry my flip phone for phone calls, a BlackBerry for emails, and an MP3 player for music,” said Larry Schwartz, CEO of Aetrex Worldwide. “Then Apple came out with the iPhone, and everything changed. That’s what we’ve done for foot scanning with Albert 2.”
Now more than ever, retailers have a number of challenges they are trying to overcome: Enhancing the in-store experience; ensuring the right fit for their customers; and building customer loyalty. As the lines between brick-and-mortar and e-commerce blur, businesses need to adopt strategies that bring value across all retail touchpoints. With Albert 2, Aetrex is able to offer a truly unique omnichannel solution that services the consumer when they first arrive in-store, after they leave the store, and beyond.
Enhanced Customer Experience
The consumer’s first experience with Albert 2 begins when they step onto the sleek, modern scanner in store. In 20 seconds or less, the two-feet-at-once scanning process captures comprehensive 3D measurements of the foot, including length, width, girth, in-step, and arch height – all down to 1/10 of a millimeter. A static pressure scan is simultaneously performed using Aetrex’s premium pressure plate technology, gathering data underfoot. There is also an option to capture dynamic pressure by having the customer walk across the scanner. Once the scan is complete, both customer and retailer will have immediate access to the customer’s unique foot profile. The visitor can then receive their foot data by email, allowing them to access their information after they leave the store.
To help guide the scanning process, Aetrex has developed a 3D character named Albert to deliver helpful instructions. The life-like, 3D animated Albert character also leads the voice-activated Learning Center that’s located within the software. The Learning Center is designed to help store associates navigate the system and educate customers on foot health. “You can activate the Learning Center from any part of the software, “says Schwartz. “If you ask, ‘Hey Albert, what are the best orthotics for my foot type?’ Albert will appear and answer your question, often with illustrations to explain.”
Engaging the consumer with this unique, interactive scanning activity allows retailers to create an experience in-store that can’t be replicated online. Not only is it a source of fun and novelty, but the results will also prompt a more tailored customer service experience from sales staff, enhancing the overall store visit and building loyalty. Fast and easy, the scanner can be used to serve the store’s customers throughout the day, increasing foot traffic and store sales.
The Albert 2 collects an unbelievable amount of data that can be used both during the point-of-sale and after the customer leaves the store. During a sale, the technology enables retailers to make more educated product suggestions: The foot scan data can be used to help retailers match the customer to their best fitting orthotic or footwear, based on their unique foot profile.
To help ensure the right fit the first time, retailers can sync their POS or e-commerce system with FitHQ, a section of the Albert 2 software. This enables employees to recommend the best fitting shoes for each customer by brand, style and size, tied to the inventory available in store. The program uses artificial intelligence, meaning FitHQ’s recommendations will grow more accurate over time as more data and purchases are processed.
Albert 2 also helps keep customers engaged after they leave the store. “One of the greatest things about the Albert 2 technology is that it increases email acquisitions for the retailer,” says Schwartz. “Retailers can use this data to help build ongoing customer relationships and loyalty, by sending personalized retargeting messages based on a customer’s foot scan.”
Retailers are able to access this comprehensive scan data from a centralized database in the Albert 2 Control Panel. Patterns and trends can be detected, analyzed, and optimized based on business needs; for example, retailers can view their customers’ shoe sizes by store to plan their inventory more efficiently. If particular styles or sizes are overstocked and need to be promoted, retailers can use the technology to properly identify and target ideal customers, based on their unique foot scan, to create customized marketing campaigns. Additionally, if a new item comes into the store, the technololgy can quickly pinpoint the customers who would be the best match based on foot type and shoe sizing data, and streamline opening offers.
Add-On Sales Opportunities: A Profit Center
The Albert 2 foot scanner is a fully integrated system that doesn’t just focus on supporting the shoe sale – it is also designed to create an opportunity for add-on sales, with the inclusion of Aetrex Orthotics. “One of the biggest advantages of Albert 2 is that it is bundled with Aetrex Orthotics, offering authentic personalized fitting solutions for customers,” said Schwartz. “This integrated business model drives add-on sales for retailers, making Albert 2 a profit center rather than a cost center.”
And, because Aetrex designs and produces all of its own hardware, software, and orthotics – all with one team – the process is seamless and ensures quality across the platform.
Aetrex’s full line of Premium Orthotics are designed for a variety of foot types. They are available in four configurations for different arch types and areas of support, and come in a variety of styles based on shoe types, such as casual, dress, or athletic. “Aetrex Orthotics offer retailers consistently high margins. The product never goes on sale, and it’s not impacted by fashion, trends, seasonality or weather,” said Schwartz.
To round out their technology offering and integration, the Albert 2 scanner is directly compatible with Aetrex’s most recent orthotic launch: 3D Printed Custom Orthotics. The use of 3D printing allows Aetrex to provide a fully custom-made orthotic, by translating complete data from a foot scan. The accuracy of the scan generated by Albert 2 ensures that this orthotic will precisely match to an individual’s pressure points and foot profile.
With its state-of-the-art technology, the new Albert 2 is a valuable investment for retailers looking to upgrade their offering – but without the higher price tag of other scanners in the market. At roughly half the cost of the competition and with favorable financing terms, Aetrex reports that the payoff is fast and lucrative. According to Schwartz, retailers who currently have both Aetrex Technology and Aetrex Orthotics in their stores report that the system provides the highest return on investment per square foot.