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TECHNOLOGY INVESTMENTS PAY OFF

January 19, 2017

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TECHNOLOGY INVESTMENTS PAY OFF

New report identifies three strategic areas of attention: seamless shopping experience, personalization and store transformation.
January 18, 2017

​DULUTH, Ga. – Retailers who spend more on technology are more likely to enjoy high sales growth, suggests a recent survey by IHL Group and NCR Corporation.

The “Unified Commerce Landscape Report” found that retailers who invest in technologies designed to create seamless shopping experiences, personalization and store transformation enjoy sales boosts of up to 100% and more.

The report split retailers into two categories per their sales growth, and correlated these groups with adoption of 30 different unified commerce functionalities. The research found that retailers using these technologies enjoyed a huge sales boost over rival retailers that did not use the commerce functionalities. These include:

  • Store transformation: Retailers that provide mobile sales tools for staff saw 77% higher sales growth; those that deployed mobile POS saw 92% higher sales; while stores that offer in-store Wi-Fi saw a mammoth 663% increase in sales compared to those that do not.
  • Personalization: 110% higher sales growth for retailers that actively market their cross-channel services; 107% higher average increase for those using customer preference across channels; and 84% more sales growth for retailers who employ loyalty programs in real time.
  • Seamless experience: 102% higher sales growth for those using cross-channel demand planning, and 18% more for retailers that use order management systems.

Ninety large retail chains in the U.S. and U.K. were surveyed across two main categories: general merchandisers, such as department stores, specialty hard and soft goods; and food, drug, convenience and mass merchants. The most successful general merchandisers also focused on an additional area, providing actionable analytics for store associates. More than half (56%) in this category are using analytics to empower in-store staff to make the best decision at the point of customer interaction.

“The last few years have seen brick and mortar retailers fighting back against the online giants, as retailers realize that [their] shops can provide a unique experience that you can’t get on the Web,” said Mark Benjamin, president and COO, NCR Corporation. “Our research shows the enormous value that can be gained from striking the right balance of investment in technologies that create a seamless shopping experience, whether online or in store, and thus, increased customer loyalty.”

Retail leaders spend on average 69% more on IT than other respondents in the survey, but the secret is not just in the total spent: “Successful retailers understand that they need to focus on every area simultaneously, and align these systems in a balanced and strategic way, if they are to unlock all the transformational benefits that technology can bring,” said Benjamin.

“Retailers can no longer view IT as only a cost center but a strategic resource to grow the business. The IT spending commitment from retail leaders is having a dramatic impact on their ability to balance the top strategic priorities: creating a seamless shopping experience, creating a ‘WOW’ in-store experience, and improving customer loyalty,” said Greg Buzek, president of IHL Group. “Without the relevant budget available, others simply cannot keep up and are most at risk.”

More information on the report can be found at: www.ncr.com/howgreenisyourgrass.