The world is at the beginning of a retail transformation and now, with the influence of digital technologies on consumers and the influx of retail revenues driven by ecommerce, retailers are being forced to reevaluate the value proposition of a store. The role of the physical store is changing as a blend of technologies meld the online and offline shopping experience.
Retailers that fail to adapt with evolving trends are playing catch up or going out of business. Walmart, the largest retailer on the planet, failed to adapt to the demands of e-commerce growth and is now investing billions of dollars in technology to catch up to and compete with its competitors. The internet has changed everything with Uber, Airbnb and Amazon transforming consumer’s expectations of retail and Google increasingly influencing the retail supply chain.
No matter their legacy, consumers expect retailers to act like internet natives. Nowhere is there a greater need for Agile than in retail.
Unifying the Experience:
When a customer searches online for a product, proceeds to buy it and then receives it, leading retailers see a unified experience that will propel them ahead of the competition. With this understanding, retailers have become embroiled in a customer offer race. Same-day, next-day and weekend deliveries are becoming the norm.
However, firms attempting to increase their competitive edge are also learning what this unified experience means in terms of forecasting demand, understanding stock levels, integrating supply chains and creating delivery networks. Customer expectations are rising to new heights making it costly for retailers with a strong presence in physical stores to prioritize them.
Making the Transition:
Though, retailers cannot create good stock visibility, accuracy and infrastructure overnight. Rethinking processes and moving to this increasingly digital world is a tough transition to make. Trailblazers in the omnichannel world see the need to reengineer systems and business processes, contrary to the beliefs of those still struggling with creating multi channel retail.
Retailers are at risk of either falling short of customer expectations or creating economically unviable systems in the long run.
These days, businesses are focusing more on a pragmatic use of large data sets and business analytics to inform the management and decision-making processes. Retailers are seeing the benefits of adjusting delivery options in mid-sales cycle so the supply chain can handle peaks in demand while still satisfying customer expectations. To accomplish this, retailers need good visibility of stock and supply chain performance.
When consumers are put at the center of the retail supply chain, retailers may recognize operational limitations and the need for partners with complimentary assets.
New connections inside and outside the business, greater visibility of stock and the ability to exploit big data analytics all require agile technology development and management processes. However, this is only the beginning. Internet of things promises to transform both customer experience and supply chain management, ballooning data volumes at the same time. Those businesses that implement agile technology and management processes will be positioned to embrace continuing transformation.
Though, starting this process can be like trying to replace your heart and lungs in the middle of a marathon while your competitors take off ahead, fully functioning.
Miracle Group offers a range of services and Agile retail solutions that suit your business needs. Explore all that our Agile dedicated teams have to offer and learn to adapt your business. Miracle Group can help you launch your retail business into the next generation of retail sales equipped with Agile mechanisms that will help you run ahead of your competitors.