The evolution of retail continues. And in today’s hyper-competitive, fast-moving world, every retailer is considering where to concentrate its efforts to ensure sustainable success.
What the experts say
Industry thought-leaders agree that we’re in a pivotal period that requires financial investment from retailers. Sucharita Kodali, VP and Principal Analyst at Forrester, said: “2022 will be a year of investment and new partnerships as retailers position their business model, strategy, marketing, stores, and operations to flourish in a post-pandemic world.”
Accenture advocates a ‘reset’ across five key imperatives; digital, sourcing, fulfilment, talent and data. This ‘reset’ is essential to any retailer looking to address new consumer trends, such as the ‘ascendancy of omnichannel’ identified by McKinsey.
Across the board, there’s consensus. Retailers must undergo a fundamental change in the way they approach and deploy technology. Only then can they create the agility they need to win.
The key digital trends
Changing shopper demographics and attitudes have dovetailed with huge digital disruption. Flooid has identified six technological trends reshaping the retail industry: Mobile and mCommerce, Big Data, The Internet of Things (IoT), Cloud, Automation & Robotics, and Computer Vision (a field of AI).
Retailers must react fast to take advantage of these new technologies. However, they have limited budgets, stretched teams and an abundance of choice. Should they go all-in on automation, experiment with the IoT, or prioritise investment in robotics? In The Great Retail Reboot white paper Flooid describes a no-compromise approach that can act as a springboard for innovation across all these key technologies. Cloud-based platform technology can connect all customer touchpoints across web and store. This provides a foundation for future innovation across all sales channels, endpoints and inventory operations, while increasing transparency for effective decision-making.
Priority focus points
Flooid has also identified three dynamic areas which every retailer needs to address:
Choice & Experience
Ever-increasing expectations for speed and quality of service, personalisation, and perceived value have combined with huge growth in customer touchpoints across web, mobile and store and a plethora of new types of customer journeys. Retailers need core agility and a connected ecosystem to deliver the experience the customer wants – wherever they are, and however they choose to shop.
People & Products
Labour shortages and margin pressures mean retailers need to redeploy and re-equip their employees to achieve more. Self-checkout, self-scan and mobile POS are being utilised to free up staff time and movement while delivering an improved customer experience. Inventory is another key focus area – not only in ensuring adequate demand and lightning-quick supply chains, but in loss prevention to cut extensive shrink.
Staying competitive requires constant reinvention and a bridging of the physical digital divide. Stores are becoming more experiential, while both in-store and online journeys are becoming more relevant and personalised to the end consumer. Rich, real-time data collected and delivered to any endpoint is a must-have for any retailer looking to provide coherent, consistent experiences for their customers.
The next step
Retailers are not alone in their journey forward. Flooid’s team of industry experts is on hand to support the transformations ahead. To help guide this process, Flooid has worked with Intel to create a must-read white paper on retail operations. The Great Retail Reboot addresses all the key questions:
- How can we drive growth and transform the customer experience?
- How do we support new omnichannel journeys?
- How do we unify shopper interactions, products, and management systems?
- How do we optimise our stores to improve performance and boost sales?
- How can we lower TCO and deliver sustainable success?
Packed with game-changing insights, this white paper can help retailers rejuvenate data, operations, and the employee base to build store and customer strategies with confidence.