Connected Retail

Todas as notícias

Is the future all about dynamic pricing within the store?

Omni-Channel, Grow your Business, Self-Check-Out, Improve Efficiencies, Retail Mobile Solutions, Understand your customer , IoT in Retail

Dynamic pricing has become a normal part of our everyday lives – and we’ve hardly noticed it. Sure, when you pass by a petrol station and see that the price has gone up or down a tiny bit, you could link that to the fluctuating price of oil on global markets, but you don’t expect […]

The post Is the future all about dynamic pricing within the store? appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

Dynamic pricing has become a normal part of our everyday lives – and we’ve hardly noticed it. Sure, when you pass by a petrol station and see that the price has gone up or down a tiny bit, you could link that to the fluctuating price of oil on global markets, but you don’t expect the same thing to happen when you’re shopping for food for instance. Could they be subject to hour-by-hour price changes driven by data optimization?

They are. Online. Amazon’s prices change constantly. Sophisticated algorithms track general as well as specific prices by looking at a range of factors: competitors’ prices, supply and demand, levels of interest… any kind of data that could make a difference between making the sale (at a profit) or not. In February 2017, during our Connected Retail Webinar which we ran together with research specialists Planet Retail, a great question came in on the subject: will we see dynamic pricing in traditional retail stores?

I think we will. And it will happen before your eyes as you walk around the store. It could even be linked to who you are and what you’re doing with your mobile devices. The UK department store, John Lewis, has long had a powerful strapline: ‘We Never Knowingly Undersold.’ They base their relationship with a very loyal customer base on the simple idea that their prices react to what’s happening in the marketplace, and they work hard to offer the best price available – or at least match it. Behind the scenes employees track competitor prices and then adjust them in store – by hand. You often see a notice saying something like – ‘reduced to match a competitor’s price’. It’s often on big-ticket items like a TV.

Accenture recently made the point that machine learning techniques would be used to predict ‘price elasticity curves’. That sounds complicated, but it isn’t really. You match today’s conditions (events, conditions, levels of competition, even traffic congestion) with today’s constraints (stock levels, margin targets etc.) and the algorithm sets a price level.[1]

I think we’ll get to a stage when the price tickets will be digital and they will change over the course of a day based on what analytic engines are doing somewhere out in the cloud. I don’t think it will happen to tins of beans or apples – but it will be the norm in car showrooms and furniture stores; maybe even clothing stores, especially at the high end. The technology to do it isn’t quite there yet, but it could make a big difference to retailers, especially if it empowers staff to make compelling offers at the right time.


 

[1] Dynamic Pricing: A Major Key to Retail Success: By: Sumeet Mahajan & Neil Fernandes Accenture March 2016

The post Is the future all about dynamic pricing within the store? appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

Mostrar detalhes
Paul Burel Friday, 30.June 2017

Digitalization meets Fashion

Omni-Channel, Grow your Business, Self-Check-Out, Improve Efficiencies, Retail Mobile Solutions, Understand your customer , IoT in Retail

What does fashion have to do with digitalization and how is Fujitsu involved in that business? Fujitsu RunMyProcess is the answer. At Panorama Berlin, July 4 – 6 2017, you can experience how Fujitsu is about to conquer new business areas in the digital world. Panorama Berlin is one of the most important trade shows […]

The post Digitalization meets Fashion appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

What does fashion have to do with digitalization and how is Fujitsu involved in that business?

Fujitsu RunMyProcess is the answer. At Panorama Berlin, July 4 – 6 2017, you can experience how Fujitsu is about to conquer new business areas in the digital world.
Panorama Berlin is one of the most important trade shows of Berlin Fashion Week, providing an unrivaled environment for top international fashion brands to meet and showcase their activities.
As lovers of fashion ourselves, we at Fujitsu RunMyProcess definitely wanted to bring our unique digital problem solving approach to the fashion world at Panorama Berlin!
As passionate digital problem solvers, we work with some of the world’s most interesting brands to connect end to end processes and help them reach their full potential.  To do this we offer a cloud platform that helps you transform the way your business works by delivering end to end digital systems that connect people, software and devices.

Using our unique technology and open approach we work with brands, studios, retailers and manufacturers to co-create the future of fashion – at Panorama Berlin, Fujitsu RunMyProcess will show up at the “Fashion Tech Solutions“ area of the event.  We would love to get together to talk about your unique challenges – we’re friendly, approachable and love to work with other people to quickly solve complex digital problems using our innovative technology.  And as a leading digital platform provider we can show you how to successfully digitize processes and mobilize experiences across any area of your business.

So come and get an overview of the transformational opportunities our technology offers for the rapid, low cost digitization of your business. Want to hear the whole story? Then come listen to our presentation on Wednesday where we will explain the ways in which our unique combination of platform and expertise is helping organizations like yours do amazing things – including the way in which a leading UK digital fashion studio – I Heart Studios – increased their turnover by 600% in a year through process streamlining and automation. Read the full success story now, or watch the video:

If you cannot attend Panorama Berlin, we would be happy to get in contact with you directly.

At Fujitsu RunMyProcess, we love to solve digital problems.

The post Digitalization meets Fashion appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

Mostrar detalhes
Petra von Thienen Tuesday, 27.June 2017

Don’t fight Amazon direct – go guerrilla or die?

Omni-Channel, Grow your Business, Self-Check-Out, Improve Efficiencies, Retail Mobile Solutions, Understand your customer , IoT in Retail

The recently announced purchase by Amazon of Whole Foods shows clearly the intent and ability to mount a challenge in almost any aspect of retail. However, many retailers still struggle to put together a coherent answer to this challenge. Most default to ‘following the market’ and fighting Amazon on its own turf where for many […]

The post Don’t fight Amazon direct – go guerrilla or die? appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

The recently announced purchase by Amazon of Whole Foods shows clearly the intent and ability to mount a challenge in almost any aspect of retail. However, many retailers still struggle to put together a coherent answer to this challenge. Most default to ‘following the market’ and fighting Amazon on its own turf where for many losing will be almost guaranteed. As an example at the recent Hype innovation forum in Bonn, I asked an audience of 300 people from across Europe how many had the Amazon app on their phones. Almost every hand in the audience went up (including mine). I then asked the audience to keep their hands up if they had another retail app on their phone, about 50% of hands went down immediately. I continued to 3 and then on to 4 apps – just 4 hands remained raised at 4 apps, out of 300 attendees. Despite this lack of customer take-up many retailers continue to follow Amazon’s lead and plough their limited resources into apps. Other technologies such as tablets, kiosks, virtual mirrors or propositions such as stores of the future similarly often offer unclear value, other than a feeling of ‘keeping-up’. I’m not saying apps and the other technologies don’t have a place, but very often, how retailers are using them at the moment doesn’t convince consumers.

So how should retailers (in fact all B to C companies) think about mobile apps and other capabilities they may develop to beat their competition, including the mighty Amazon?

At Fujitsu, we have come up with a simple model that we believe can help.  We will explore it at our World Tour event on Thursday 6th July in London. But I’ll give you a brief introduction here in the hope that it will help you design a better customer experience, and invest more wisely even if you can’t make it on the day.

Our model is purposely simple, so that every silo in a retailer can understand it. It also focuses on the one person who Sam Walton famously said can fire everyone, the customer.

In the Fujitsu CX model the customer is understood via just two dimensions

  • Is the customer seeking the fulfilment of a visible need or invisible need? A visible need is one that the consumer is conscious enough of that they can verbalise it in some form; ‘I need a ¾ inch paint brush’ or even the less defined ‘I need to paint my window frames’ are examples of visible needs.  On the other end of this same dimension are invisible needs. These whilst just as real as the visible needs, aren’t often verbalised by customers as they exist in their subconscious. These needs are for many categories much more powerful in predicting buying behaviour despite the fact that we remain largely unaware of them. These subconscious needs largely stem from an identity we have for ourselves (I am…a good parent, the cookery expert, the sensible one, the entertainer etc) or from a purpose we have with others (I want to…belong, be admired, be cared for etc ). Few people go into a car showroom and say ‘Can I have a car that makes me feel or look successful’ but it’s an invisible need that drives millions of new car sales for car dealers and manufacturers.
  • Is the customer informed or uninformed in how to fulfil their needs? This second dimension encompasses how much the customer knows about how they might fulfil their needs. This touches not only on visible needs i.e. do I know the type of paint brush I need to paint my windows or not? It is similar for invisible needs i.e. do I feel safe knowing what I will get from this brand/experience or is it unknown to me? Whilst it’s trickier for customers to sense the information gap for invisible needs, they will feel or sense it as emotional discomfort. When done right the customer feels a sense of comfort and security – they feel at home. These are the people who hang around Apple stores looking at the same products week after week. This happens because at a deep level they are fulfilling an invisible need to belong or support an identity in a way that their brains expect. On the right-hand side of the model a customer’s subconscious doesn’t know the experience they will get. This however isn’t a moment of stress if they are taken on a voyage of discovery, surprise and even delight. Human beings are curious and new positive discoveries are welcome and valuable to us.

In each quadrant of the model the needs of the customer will be very different. In the top left quadrant the customer knows what they want, and they’re informed.  They’ll be looking for a good price, convenience and assurance of quality. The need for effective and efficient supply chain capabilities therefore become critical in this quadrant.  On the top right the customer knows the need but requires help in finding the correct solution. They’ll need advice, trust and to be listened to. Knowledgeable staff possibly assisted with staff apps, chat-bots, interactive displays with ‘lift and learn’ solutions or even mobile apps might be areas to investigate here.

On the lower left of the quadrant, the customers knows what they’re getting, they want to stay with this retailer as it fulfils an invisible need, usually around identity and belonging. What we need to do here is reassure them through what they see, hear, smell, touch and even taste that their subconscious is right. We could use digital signage, the language staff use or the clothes they wear, store design, social media presence, a glass of champagne and even the thickness of a till receipt to reassure a customer they are in the right place for ‘people like them’. In the bottom right quadrant the customer doesn’t know what they want or are unsure of what to expect until they see it in the store. Here we need to look at how we can drive the traffic to enable people to discover us, and then be surprised and delighted when they see the right thing that they didn’t even know existed let alone that they wanted. Lush, the soap retailer, is a great example of this. I’m sure many of their customers do go in for visible needs (either for themselves or as presents), but many will also just wander in which is why their stores tend to be in high-traffic areas.  Soap was invented 5000 years ago by the Babylonians. Soap should be a commodity by now, but Lush by appealing to consumer invisible needs keeps revenues and profits growing.

For any customer, there are times when they are in any of the quadrants. A retailer should make sure that for any customer, they are able to act effectively and efficiently in every quadrant, but most simply don’t.

In my experience most retailers are highly focussed on the top left quadrant. Here they compete head on with Amazon (probably unsuccessfully). Apple and Lush have shown that the real margins lie in the other 3 quadrants. When people identify with your experience, or you can leverage an identity that they already have then you can increase retention and grow your consumer business. As a personal example I am an Amazon Prime customer living in Brighton, a seaside town 60 miles south of London with many independent retailers. Recently my feeling of being a ‘Brightonian’ was strengthened after attending some local community events, by a sense of pride in the local football team’s promotion to the top flight of English football and issues raised by a general election we were having in the UK.  These events have increased my sense of connection to the local community. This slight re-evaluation of who I am deepened the slightly ‘dirty’ feeling I’ve always had from buying from Amazon. A feeling that largely stems from the reports of their tax avoidance measures. The uneven playing field they have against local retailers, their lack of support for local public services such as schools, healthcare and police upsets the ‘new me’. It upsets me enough that I have a list of 4 books that I’m waiting to buy in town that a few months ago would be on my bookshelf already. I’ll use Amazon for the customer reviews but now try to buy local. Not because I was told to, or asked to, but because my self-identity has evolved.  Do I really need those books right now? Yes, it’d be nice, but people who care about Brighton (of which I’ve decided I’m now one) don’t do that. They’ll wait until they can get into town and meet other Brightonians and buy from them.

I think it is very possible that many retailers by following Amazon‘s lead have focussed on an experience that is transactional and focused on visible needs rather than human and focused on powerful invisible drivers. Customer surveys probably have a part to play in this also, as customers will by definition only talk about needs they are aware of i.e. visible needs – price, availability, assurance. The invisible needs by their very nature won’t turn up directly on surveys. Invisible needs can however be alluded too through watching customer behaviour.  Do people visit your store in alone or in groups? If in groups is it because your goods are too heavy for one person to carry or because your customers want to ensure that they buy something that helps them belong within their peer group, or reassure them of an identity.

Retailers must think about the capabilities they’ll need to fulfil in order to meet customers’ desires in each of the quadrants, not just top left. Any retailer that isn’t actively developing all four quadrants is leaving a gap for others to exploit – is Apple’s recent lack of surprises and delight leaving a gap for Samsung to enter? The capabilities they’ll need could include mobile apps or a whole host of other digital technologies. Branding and operational changes may require no technology at all!

If you want to know more about the model, the opportunities and challenges it presents to retailers and how it can be used to accelerate your digital transformation in the right direction, then come to my break-out session at the free Fujitsu’s World Tour event in London on Thursday July 6th. It’d be great to meet you there, and continue any discussion that might come from this article. You can register for free here. Or if you’re looking to work on your customer experience feel free to DM me.

The post Don’t fight Amazon direct – go guerrilla or die? appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

Mostrar detalhes
Jat Sahi Friday, 23.June 2017

AI is coming – but human-centric customer service will not go away

Omni-Channel, Grow your Business, Self-Check-Out, Improve Efficiencies, Retail Mobile Solutions, Understand your customer , IoT in Retail

Across the three Connected Retail webinars we ran with research specialists, Planet Retail, one theme dominated: what’s the balance between the online and real worlds. How important are bricks-and-mortar stores at a time when online sales are rising almost exponentially? In our last webinar, we spoke about how Amazon has changed the landscape of competition. […]

The post AI is coming – but human-centric customer service will not go away appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

Across the three Connected Retail webinars we ran with research specialists, Planet Retail, one theme dominated: what’s the balance between the online and real worlds. How important are bricks-and-mortar stores at a time when online sales are rising almost exponentially?

In our last webinar, we spoke about how Amazon has changed the landscape of competition. It’s new AI driven tool – the Echo – is making it easier than ever before to think of something you want, say it out loud, and then find it turning up on your doorstep within two days… or the next day… or within two hours depending on where you live. That’s amazing. And frightening. The gap between desire and fulfilment is getting ever narrower.

But useful as Alexa (the voice within the Echo) is, the retail environment is, as ever, much more complex than some technology enthusiasts claim. In fact, there’s a renaissance going on in physical stores – the analogue world in which humans still make personal connections. A recent book by journalist David Sax, The Revenge of Analog[1] describes how there’s a move back to good, old fashioned person-to-person customer service. But importantly, it’s integral to the success of the digital world too. AI is helping retailers connect with shoppers, draw them to their brand, make sales, and encourage them to venture into bricks-and-mortar stores. That’s why Amazon is launching real-world bookstores and even grocery stores (hence Amazon Go).

Sax quotes one bookstore owner from New York: “The world isn’t so much a competitive war of distribution between bricks-and-mortar stores and online retailers, but a war of brands.” It’s a very good point. Amazon’s brand means you trust Alexa. It also means you might visit their store. When you’re in the store you might order something, buy something off a shelf, or just browse. You’ll connect with the staff, who will embody the brand. Then you’ll go home liking the brand just a little bit more than you did before. The technology isn’t the point. The brand experience is.

So AI, whether it’s used in the back office, the store or in the home is merely an extension of that quintessentially analogue thing: customer service. You must balance the technology with the real-life interaction, but never lose sight of what matters most: a human connection to your brand. That’s why, at Fujitsu, we always start with the human and build from there.

Read the whitepaper based on the Webinar here.


[1] Public Affairs Books, New York 2016

The post AI is coming – but human-centric customer service will not go away appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

Mostrar detalhes
Richard Clarke Monday, 29.May 2017

Retail Is Fundamentally About People

Omni-Channel, Grow your Business, Self-Check-Out, Improve Efficiencies, Retail Mobile Solutions, Understand your customer , IoT in Retail

“Are we too product focused?” was an intriguing question asked during our Connected Store webinar back in November. You’d think that stores were all about products. That products were what mattered most: where they were sourced, how they were procured, supplied, presented and, ultimately, priced and sold. But the question was a good one because […]

The post Retail Is Fundamentally About People appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

“Are we too product focused?” was an intriguing question asked during our Connected Store webinar back in November. You’d think that stores were all about products. That products were what mattered most: where they were sourced, how they were procured, supplied, presented and, ultimately, priced and sold. But the question was a good one because it got to the heart of what retail stores need to do in a world where online seems to threaten them.

Planet Retail conducted research in 14 countries amongst 63,000 consumers, and their findings reveal that people love to use technology to shop: they use it to check out what’s available and where, and compare prices. They like to get offers via their phone, or to connect with other shoppers to share reviews. It’s a constant flow of information that both online and offline retailers are working hard to influence. But, the focus is far too rigid: it’s all about the products themselves.

When psychologists study how we shop, and consume – and they spend a lot of time studying our habits; after all, we spend a lot of time buying stuff! – they usually come to the same conclusions: it’s not the products that count, it’s the reasons we buy them. One anthropologist concluded that shopping was about love. Even buying crispbread for the family was, at its heart, all about caring for the family. It didn’t matter what brand the crispbread were, the point was feeding your loved ones. A primal instinct. Look at all the Christmas ads on TV: they’re not about products, but about sharing and caring and love for hearth and home. The products are secondary.

The problem for pureplay retailers is that the screen – be it TV, tablet or phone – is a cold, removed experience. It’s basically a list of products dressed up with pictures and colorful designs. It’s just stuff. The psychologists will tell you that any normal human being, when faced with an array of products to choose from will suffer a mini-crisis in their brains: ‘the paradox of choice.’ We say we want choice, but we don’t want a big choice. We want guidance to make decisions about what to buy. And that’s why the retail store is so important. It’s the comfort of knowing that if we stand in front of a shelf full of stuff and we just can’t decide, we can ask someone to help us.

That’s why 90% of us still go to real shops to buy the things we want

And, even though online sales will grow by 108% over the next five years, we’ll keep going to stores. So, the imperative is to use digital technology to make those stores a better experience. Everything from digital signage to kiosks; magic mirrors; connected terminals to check availability and prices; and staff with devices that enables them to give the best advice and service.

That’s what the Connected Store can do at the front-end. Behind the scenes –  from administration to buying and procurement through to supply chain and logistics – digital can smooth the path of products to the shelves instore.

It’s important to focus on people. Use digital to help them get what they want when they want it. But don’t let the products get in the way!

Our next webinar is about the Connected Retailer and it’s on January 12th 2017 – you can register for it here. You can also download recordings of the first two webinars.

The post Retail Is Fundamentally About People appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

Mostrar detalhes
Petri Haatainen Monday, 19.December 2016

Dear retailers, please shake up your store concept

Omni-Channel, Grow your Business, Self-Check-Out, Improve Efficiencies, Retail Mobile Solutions, Understand your customer , IoT in Retail

It’s time for something other than clothes hangers and hanging rails, bookshelves and bright cold meat counters. Of course – as consumers we all have our favorite bookstore, supermarket and fashion store. We go there mostly because it’s convenient for us; it’s either around the corner or on our way to work. Every time we […]

The post Dear retailers, please shake up your store concept appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

It’s time for something other than clothes hangers and hanging rails, bookshelves and bright cold meat counters.

Of course – as consumers we all have our favorite bookstore, supermarket and fashion store. We go there mostly because it’s convenient for us; it’s either around the corner or on our way to work. Every time we shop we have our very own routine that tells us where to find the products that interest us. But, hand on heart, we could use some change here.

Some years ago Hollister and Abercrombie & Fitch gave a perfect example of a radical change in fashion store concepts: loud music, dark atmosphere, intrusive fragrance in the air and half-naked employees made teenagers spend a lot of money on, to be honest, not-so-unique and not-so-special clothes. The American brand stood out against other shops in the mall – but not only because of the interior; it started with massive screens on which moving water is projected or a simulation of a small beach house. Queuing youngsters in front of the shop made the show perfect. Customers of these kind of outstanding shops buy the atmosphere, the experience, the shopping adventure.

What can shops of other sectors learn from that?

Eataly makes it happen: Food shopping on a whole new level. The combination of restaurants, cafés and product aisles brings a wind of change to long-established REWE/LIDL-customers. Mostly Italian products are sold to give an impression of a customer’s last culinary trip to Italy. It’s more like leisure shopping time than a normal (annoying) food shop.

Livraria Cultura in Sao Paulo shakes up the conventional concept of a book store. Instead of long library-style aisles with perfectly arranged books, you can actually read in this book store. Big stairs and cozy chairs give you enough possibilities to relax and look into a book before buying it. Additionally, thanks to a built-in kitchen chefs can present their creations from their latest cookbooks. For the future, the owner plans to integrate a whole restaurant designed for a bookstore.

These examples show: You don’t need to be a concept store to convince with uniqueness.

Join our next Retail Webinar with Planet Retail on January 12, 2017 when we’ll be talking about how to build a connected retail business for your future store concept. Register now.

The post Dear retailers, please shake up your store concept appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

Mostrar detalhes
Sonja Adomeit Thursday, 15.December 2016

It’s the Hormones, stupid!

Omni-Channel, Grow your Business, Self-Check-Out, Improve Efficiencies, Retail Mobile Solutions, Understand your customer , IoT in Retail

During our recent webinar with Planet Retail about The Connected Store, we got talking about hormones and shopping, and how it’s easy to get carried away by technology and neglect the need for great customer service. Especially in retail. Yes, digital is transforming the way we shop, and how retailers engage customers. There’s no doubt […]

The post It’s the Hormones, stupid! appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

During our recent webinar with Planet Retail about The Connected Store, we got talking about hormones and shopping, and how it’s easy to get carried away by technology and neglect the need for great customer service. Especially in retail.

Yes, digital is transforming the way we shop, and how retailers engage customers. There’s no doubt about that. But, there’s a danger we’ll forgot what the technology is for: it’s there to help retailers deliver a better service. And service is, ultimately, a human thing. It’s a connection that happens between staff and customers. Between the brand and the consumer. Yes, it might be via digital means, but it’s got to be based on what makes people feel good. That’s trust and co-operation.

And shopping makes people feel good.

It’s the number one activity that cheers people up (in UK at least), and even half of men say they love the thrill of buying stuff in stores. A third of people say it’s an essential part of the social lives. Most important of all, 53% of people say a store beats online shopping by a mile.

What’s going on? We’re slaves to our hormones. When humans connect, they are rewarded by a hormone called Oxytocin. It’s been called ‘the cuddle-hormone’ or the ‘warm-and-fuzzy’ brain chemical. It gets released when people establish a trust. Consumers feel it when they’re served by a store assistant who knows what they’re talking about, can help them make a purchasing decision, and has all the right information at their fingertips. It’s the hormone that underpins brand loyalty.

And that’s where the technology comes in.

A truly connected store means that sales staff can do more for shoppers. If they can do more, and do it faster and more efficiently, then the Oxytocin flows naturally. A bond of trust in both the sales assistant and the brand is established, and it’s hard to break. That’s why retailers need to focus on enabling their operations to support their people to be more effective at the point of sale. But right now, retailers aren’t very connected. They’re too focused on products. Intelligent deployment of technology to aid sales staff means you can develop your brand over the long-term but act decisively to give customers what they want in the short-term. That means ensuring the omni-channel is seamless, and culminates in a great instore experience.

Read the whitepaper based on the Webinar, THE CONNECTED RETAIL REVOLUTION: THIS TIME IT’S PERSONAL, here – and download a recording of our Webinars too.

The post It’s the Hormones, stupid! appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

Mostrar detalhes
Jan Stötzel Wednesday, 14.December 2016

Does a retail store need to be profitable?

Omni-Channel, Grow your Business, Self-Check-Out, Improve Efficiencies, Retail Mobile Solutions, Understand your customer , IoT in Retail

It’s a great question, asked during Fujitsu’s second Connected Retail Webinar in November, which we ran with Planet Retail. The answer you immediately think of is: a retail store must be profitable. Think of all the expensive real estate. Each square-foot of space needs to be generating revenue and, most importantly, profit. It turns out […]

The post Does a retail store need to be profitable? appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

It’s a great question, asked during Fujitsu’s second Connected Retail Webinar in November, which we ran with Planet Retail. The answer you immediately think of is: a retail store must be profitable. Think of all the expensive real estate. Each square-foot of space needs to be generating revenue and, most importantly, profit.

It turns out that many modern retailers don’t think that way. The retail store – especially those known as ‘Flagship stores’ – is more than a profit and loss exercize based on how much real estate they have and how much footfall they generate. The store is all about the brand. It’s about service, experience, and engagement with customers. So, it’s possible to make the bold, but simple statement that, making a profit per square foot is not the point. In truth, it never was.

Some people believe that opening a store online is the way to make money in retail. But, not even Amazon makes a substantial profit on their actual sales. Moving product generates revenue, but not huge amounts of profit. What boosts profits is service. That’s why Amazon is not only offering an array of service options under its Prime label, it’s also moving into the physical retail arena. They understand that being just one of the over 800,000 online stores available on the web does not deliver rising, or even stable profits over the long-term. Research shows that more than 90% of us like to go to physical retail stores, even if we do much of our shopping online.

It’s the totality of the omni-channel experience that counts.

You browse online, maybe buy something, then click-and-collect, or return the item to a physical store. Once you’re there you can be offered multiple opportunities to buy something else, or buy something better (the old up-sell and cross-sell, but in new forms). Planet Retail’s research shows that 56% of consumers want good customer service and, most importantly, knowledgeable and engaging staff.

A retail store is a huge, experiential, tactile marketing opportunity. It’s where your brand comes to life, and where your well-trained and digitally supported (which is where our Playbook comes in) sales staff engage with customers and build loyalty. It’s becoming more and more common for retailers to assign online sales to the physical stores nearest to shoppers (by postal or zip code). That means shoppers can be enticed into the store, or offered the chance to return items instore and either get a refund and try something else. The store gets the benefit of the online sales in their accounts, and a clearer picture of the shopper is created which leads to deeper engagement – and more sales (hopefully).

So, no, your real estate doesn’t have to be profitable, but your brand does. Look at the totality of the experience, and connect it all together.

Download a recording of the webinar and listen to the whole story.

The post Does a retail store need to be profitable? appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

Mostrar detalhes
Richard Clarke Monday, 28.November 2016

When does personalization become intrusion?

Omni-Channel, Grow your Business, Self-Check-Out, Improve Efficiencies, Retail Mobile Solutions, Understand your customer , IoT in Retail

During our recent Fujitsu Retail Webinar on September 29th, a member of the audience asked a very pertinent question: When does personalization become intrusion? Our data is collected and then used to offer us goods and services. Retailers know that consumers want to be treated in a personal and friendly way. So, the data is […]

The post When does personalization become intrusion? appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

During our recent Fujitsu Retail Webinar on September 29th, a member of the audience asked a very pertinent question: When does personalization become intrusion? Our data is collected and then used to offer us goods and services. Retailers know that consumers want to be treated in a personal and friendly way. So, the data is analyzed and manipulated to create a sense that the retailer (or any other organization) really knows you. And that can get creepy. We know you like blue shirts… holidays in Spain… football… tennis… old Bob Dylan recordings… bingeing on Netflix… drinking lots of beer… having a big over-draft… and talking to divorce lawyers. I’m exaggerating, but… not much.

Clearly, by the end of that list any consumer will start to get the feeling that they’re being watched.

And they are. All of those elements could be revealed by parsing the data generated by that specific person (who is fictional, honestly!). But my point is a simple one: you have to be careful how you use analytics, and especially how you use the data to interact with consumers.

In fact, as the research that our partner on the webinar, Planet Retail, revealed, consumers want to be rewarded not just for their loyalty but their co-operation: they let you gather and use their data, but there has to be something in it for them. In fact, their research showed that 58% of consumers say that their choice of store (online or in the real world) is influenced by rewards for loyalty, which could be regular discounts or points etc.

Millennials are more relaxed about their data being used, but they too are wary of any organization that goes too far.

The famous example is Target in the USA, which tracked the purchases of a teen and then sent her coupons for baby-clothes. The data suggested she’d become pregnant. And it was right. Only she was 15, and hadn’t told her father – who got the coupons in the mail.

The point is to get data on attitudes to the use of personal data. You have to research your demographics. Don’t make assumptions. Don’t take Millennials for granted – even they have a line they don’t want crossed. It’s vital you have the technology to get the data, and the platforms to analyze it and make profitable use of it. But do it openly. Give something back to the consumer. Don’t make it too transactional – make it human. It’s all part of creating and sustaining a relationship with consumers. Which is the secret of good retail anyway.

Tune in for our next Retail Webinar with Planet Retail on January 12th 2017 when we’ll be talking about how retailers survive and thrive in a disruptive retail market. Register now.

The post When does personalization become intrusion? appeared first on FACE2FUJITSU.

Mostrar detalhes
Thomas Zott Tuesday, 22.November 2016