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#Technology | Improving Productivity Through Retail Analytics Solutions

With the ever changing and unpredictable consumer behavior, business needs to have the leverage of an advanced retail analytics solutions. This would envisage the outcome better, by allowing the computers to do the heavy lifting, leaving plenty of time for genuine profit oriented policy making. Organizations need to go in for a digital transformation, which will vector towards actionable insights and better customer service. Customers are well informed in today’s well connected markets, which call for a re-look at the policy level, to survive and excel in the tough competition. Retail business, needs a special care, when it comes to digitization of IT landscape.  There are many factors, which needs to be considered, while designing the analytics of the retail business.

Pricing is the most dynamic part of the great retail game, as there are multiplefactors which influence the same. How much should be priced, is the perennial question, which is asked by every retailer. If the customer per hour footfall needs to be increased, the prices need to be competitive enough. However, before zeroing into the right price, one must identify all the cost factors associated with the retail supply chain. Now factoring all the cost, right from the cost price and operating expense, needs a specialized approach.  A good retail analytics software should incorporate all the variables of costing, like the operation direct overhead, logistics, human resource, and marketing. The software should also analyze mark up pricing strategies, to be on top of the game, by accounting for discounts and other benefits passed on to customers through offers.

Retail Business is highly customer centric than product centric; therefore each activity should revolve around customer satisfaction. With ever changing shift in customer preferences, merchandize assortment optimization and planning needs to be spot on, whichis beyond the scope of mere an excel sheet. Assortments need to be planned with the help of advanced retail analytics, according to their attributes, volume requirements, and logistics constraints. The planning should be based on target products, and the changes can be percolated down to different branch store. Real-time inventory adjustments, and counting, with every goods movement or sale, are possible with the usage of analytics. Not only inventory, but the consignments plans can also be linked up with the organizations core financial planning and budgeting. Retailers get to know instantaneously about then financial position of each store, with the given material inventory.

Retail chain, needs to have the power of location planning, which is beyond the scope of any excel sheet. To get better visibility of the business as a whole, they need to have a coherent location cum consignment plan, so that not a single product is out of place.  A single unit of misplaced inventory is waste of sales opportunity. However, location planning is easier said than done, with launch of a new productcampaign and shelf life of existing product. Therefore, retail analytics should have the functionality of allotment, prior to the arrival of any consignment. With the complexity of assortment, care should be taken to avoid duplication of products. Analytics should churn out an optimum replacement plan, based on the real time inventory movement and customer preference.

There are many internationally recognized benchmark indicators for retail business performance. Advanced analytics will compare your retail business with the indicators, and suggest possible improvement areas. With advanced analytics, the performance and set KPIs of each employees can be monitored closely. The software will churn out employee of the month, based on the set KPI and the same can be displayed on a screen, to lift the spirit of working environment. Today’s retail chain is omnichannel, which calls for different strategy, which clearly chalks out the path to purchase.  All the customer tough points should be captured and analyzed, so that the policy making is customer preference specific. Carefully designed marketing campaign, based on past analytical trend, will enhance the product basket, leading to more purchase. Advanced retail softwares can also auto replenish the stock, by purchase order scheduling, as per set re-order level. In this way, stock out situations can be nullified, which is a common problem in retail business. This level of automation is only possible, with the amount of cross industry interconnection.

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