Salesfloor enables retail associates to connect directly with customers, even when they are shopping online.

Like so many businesses, retail is driven by people and the relationships they form. Independent garden centers in particular know the importance of sales associates forming connections with customers.

Retail technology is constantly progressing toward more convenient and intuitive relationships between consumers and their favorite brands, and Salesfloor is one tool designed to bring retail sales associates and customers closer together. These connections are especially important with the rising prevalence of online shopping.

Salesfloor offers retail brands and associates a variety of tools that bridge the gap between online and in-person transactions. The platform includes personalized “digital storefronts” that allow customers to shop directly with associates or stores from home, individual marketing channels for associates, and several other functions that connect associates with customers.

Launched in 2013 by co-founders Oscar Sachs and chief client officer Ben Rodier, Salesfloor was intended to empower retail brands to bring their in-store customer service to their online channels.

“From our time in working with [large] retailers, we recognized the need to address the significant void in service that shoppers experienced when using a retailer’s website versus when they shop in-store,” Rodier says. “Salesfloor looks to close this gap by replicating the in-store experience on brand websites.

“With the ability to provide a better shopper experience and leave a personal impression on each shopper, the likelihood of creating increased customer loyalty drastically increases,” Rodier adds.

Although most retailers could benefit from making their digital sales channels more personalized and customer-friendly, Rodier says Salesfloor is especially useful for garden centers and other specialty retailers that place importance on educating their shoppers.

“With a garden center, for example, shoppers can shop directly from their local garden center online, which understands the climate and even their own garden. They can ask questions in real-time as they browse and receive an informed, contextual answer,” Rodier says. “This way, customers know they are making an informed decision and they’re thus equipped with all the info they need to have a healthy garden.”

With the ability to track sales and directly communicate to customers through email, social media and the Salesfloor mobile app, Salesfloor allows retailers to make more informed recommendations.

“Associates can also recommend specific plants to purchase [based] off past purchases with the garden center to make more personalized recommendations,” Rodier says. “The associate can also be increasingly mindful of the environment, for example, showing off indoor plants during the winter months in the Midwest that aren’t toxic to pets, as well as indoor veggies and herbs for the colder months.”

With more and more retailers taking strides to integrate digital solutions into their long-standing sales methods, Rodier says he expects Salesfloor and platforms like it to continue expanding their ranges of services.

“As we move further into the digital age, it becomes more important to develop new ways to keep that human connection while shopping online,” Rodier says. “We’re also seeing platforms like Salesfloor become an integral part of a retailer’s proposed omnichannel strategy.”