Providers of retail planning solutions, Retail Smart, have commented on the discussion regarding the struggles organisations are facing and how technology can contribute to the solution.
In the current market, it is becoming increasingly difficult for organisations to be able to stand out from the crowd. However, customer experience is increasingly becoming the factor setting organisations apart from their competitors. Customer experience is continually evolving and technological developments have made today’s consumers more demanding and more vocal than ever before. Retailers are continually looking to create the optimum customer experience, but the goal posts are in perpetual movement.
Yunus Ozlaer, a partner at management consultancy Ernst & Young, says: “The holy grail is to be 100% responsive to customer expectations, but that’s almost impossible. So you have to keep things shifting and growing because if you don’t, the customer will always be one step ahead.” It is reported that the most advanced sectors in this regard tend to be retailers, particularly in the fields of food, clothing and consumer electronics. Many of these companies have taken on heads of customer experience in order to work towards the same customer-oriented goal.
In order to achieve a consistently positive customer experience and to ensure the right culture is in place, organisations are using technology from across a wide spectrum in order to underpin a wider customer-centric vision. Ed Thompson, an analyst at market research firm Gartner, stated: “Between 5% and 10% of companies truly have a customer culture at their core. Customer experience isn’t really a market per se. It’s a business goal and, white technology can help you get there, the term hasn’t yet been usurped into just buying software.”
Retailers can take progressive steps towards achieving and understanding a customer-centric vision by utilising the latest technology to enhance their in-store experience. Food, clothing and consumer electrics companies have all adopted 3D retail experience technology in order to understand the ever-demanding needs and demands of the in-store consumer.
A spokesperson from Retail Smart stated: “With the right technology to hand, organisations can ensure that their customer experience culture is evident on the shop floor. In store planograms give retailers the chance to not only see through the eye of the consumer, but also to better understand how the customer is motivated.”
“By utilising in-store data and merchandising research, retailers can better understand current consumer shopping habits and use planogram technology to continually build credible product ranges and optimise shelf and store selling space. Customer experience begins on the shop floor and technology can lend organisations a huge helping hand.”