Strategic Business Development, Mercaux
Last week, the retail industry gathered in London Olympia for the technology conference RBTE. Almost all of the major UK retailers attended, with a noticeable eagerness and enthusiasm to bring digital capabilities in-store as we move closer towards the third quarter
Overall, the dynamic of the RBTE event reflected what we have recently seen in the retail space. In the world of 'new retail', providers are offering flexible services and connecting with complementary partners to form a digital ecosystem for retailers.
In case you missed the RBTE event, we have put together the key highlights.No Longer Retailers’ Black Box
The need for retailers to capture in-store data and run analytics is not novel. However, during this year’s RBTE, interest in implementing sophisticated solutions that can lead to deep insight on consumer behaviour was apparent. C-level executives appear to be thinking more clearly about 1.) the different types of data they would like to capture in-store and 2.) what they can actually do with the data once they have it e.g. how can they easily analyse and respond to it.
The Sum is Greater than the Parts
Gone are the days when large enterprise solution providers dictated the scope of the retail ecosystem. With API driven lightweight platforms, retailers now have the freedom and control to determine their technology needs within a flexible and agile ecosystem. SaaS based platforms offer retailers the opportunity to leverage the benefits of linking to a variety of expert service providers and partnering with the most innovative companies from inventory optimisation to in-store technology. With each provider working as part of the whole ecosystem, retailers are actively testing out new models and trialling new solutions to leverage their collective impact.
Past the Days of Early Adopters
Conversations on the importance of digital transformation have filled retail boardrooms for years. It seems that now, after enough established brands have fallen by the wayside, the industry has matured, and we are now seeing the majority of retailers fully embrace in-store technology. Not only are retail teams seeking digital capabilities, but also, they are upgrading to more comprehensive solutions and moving away from basic offerings like ecommerce in-store.
Research from Forrester claims that 50% of retail digital executives are expanding, upgrading or making new investments in customer engagement devices in-store, while 45% are investing in devices to help the store associate deliver a more personalised experience for customers. Additionally, 56% of retailers are investing in checkout and payment technologies for their stores.
Retail transformation is not a destination but a journey, which is best enabled by modular and flexible solution providers so that retailers are able to be nimble and keep innovating.
For additional retail insights around which initiatives are being prioritised, the challenges being faced and what trends are on the horizon read our ‘Taking the Pulse of Retail’ report. Get Report