The transformation and expansion of the retail industry is so significant that the trends and practices of 20 years ago are nearly unrecognizable when compared with those of today’s retail industry. Consumers have purchasing options and advantages due to technology now that simply did not exist even just 10 years ago. Competition is at an all-time high, given that consumers can compare prices and make purchases whenever they want from among a significant pool of retailers. And, they can do all of it from a mobile device, in the comfort of their home or within a brick-and-mortar store. Armed with the advantages gained from current technology, the multichannel consumer is not only the most well-informed shopper retailers have ever encountered, they are one of their greatest challenges.
However daunting the current consumer landscape may seem, retailers are also reaping rewards from change and new technologies. By employing key best practices, retailers are positioning their organizations to thrive in the current consumer-driven environment and building foundations that facilitate growth, competitiveness and, ultimately, success.
Retailers supported by enterprise software and technology
Simply put, retailers can experience exponential growth by employing strategies that nurture customers and that are supported by leading technology applications. The five pillars of retail growth are a set of best practices for retailers, which are supported by enterprise software and technologies, giving them the competitive edge they need in today’s retail industry. They include:
- Adding and retaining customers
- Implementing innovative merchandising strategies
- Developing product innovations that drive growth
- Delivering advanced business intelligence
- Constructing a best-in-class technology platform
Technology enables business success
By harnessing the power of social media, many retailers are reaching more customers where they are, meeting their needs and nurturing a community of engaged shoppers who, as a result, become increasingly vested and prove to be more profitable customers. Access to data and intelligence about trends, consumer behavior, products and merchandising empowers retailers to make decisions based on actionable information. Deploying a single-source technology platform that incorporates these resources along with vision into warehousing and transportation, inventory and point-of-sales data ensures that retailers are offering the products consumers want, that merchandise is available to the customer when and where they want it, and that consumer trends and demands are being met. Retailers adopting this philosophy are, in effect, adapting to the changing environment through the strategic use of data and technology.