Given the multitude of paradigm shifts brought on by COVID-19 and challenges now faced by business owners related to the coronavirus, it bears reiterating: As rapidly as modern retail and online shopping environments are evolving, brands have to be far more agile and adaptable about shifting strategies to connect with today’s customers and meet their quickly-changing needs. Luckily for business leaders, a newer, more flexible suite of secure technology and data insights solutions allows organizations to operate with greater agility, better plan around uncertainty, and engage shoppers across the full online, mobile, and retail buying spectrum.
Experts tell me that growing access to the Internet of Things (IoT) and analytics tools will empower market leaders to more effectively understand buyer preferences and behaviors, and strategize accordingly. In effect, by empowering them to tap into a network of connected devices and apps which are constantly sharing information and talking to one another, retailers will gain the ability to better predict inventory needs, cut costs, and enhance the overall customer experience. Essentially, using the tools that a variety of all and online service providers now offer, retailers can not only access scalable, turnkey solutions for enhancing supply chain operations, boosting workforce productivity, and improving consumer-facing communications. Backed by world-class insights and analytics, these solutions also allow forward-thinking organizations to predict when and where tomorrow’s shoppers will be, what they’ll be hunting for – and which messages they’ll find most receptive.
On the back-end of operations, these technology advancements should also enable businesses to gain the ability to more effectively geo-target where retail outlets should be located, pre-anticipate staffing or inventory needs, and shrink order pick-up times from 30 minutes to under 150 seconds. On the front-end, they’ll allow organizations of every size – even those with online-only storefronts – to be able to better predict which products to stock, when to put them in front of shoppers, and how to best present these goods to potential buyers to maximize sales and conversion rates. Ultimately, it all adds up to a more efficient organization, and one that’s better equipped to change in time with changing markets.