Technology is changing the way people shop and retailers are realizing that consumers are no longer captive to retailers. They are in charge. Consumers can now buy anything, anywhere.
To survive, retailers must now compete on the service level. In fact, 78% of millennials prefer spending money on experiences rather than products. A great example are Apple stores. They’ve done a terrific job at providing customers with an experience. Customers can try new products, ask questions of knowledgeable sales associates, and learn new ways to use the products. Look at any mall in America and those stores are consistently packed.
But how do they do it? They make it easy for consumers to engage when and how they want—say, from their mobile devices while they are at home or on the move. They create fluid, omnichannel experiences by connecting all touch points of the customer including desktop, mobile, and in-store. They have equipped their sales associates with technology, tools, and information to enable terrific customer experiences. In-store associates have product answers and they can check shoppers out from anywhere in the store.
Technology runs their stores. The lines between physical and digital blur—for example, brick- and-mortar stores become fulfillment and return centers for online orders. And, consumers have the same experience online as they do in the store. It’s all one seamless coherent experience.
But many large retailers are saddled with legacy systems and large real estate footprints where the digital portion of their organization is totally separate from everything else. Implementation of trailblazing technologies like artificial intelligence, Internet of things, and big data requires a total shift not only in retail strategy but also in the general structure of organizations. Such core re-workings are exactly what digital transformation calls for — it is a new way of thinking and turning your business into a full-fledged, digital retailer.
By embracing change, providing customers with what they want when they want, by helping improve inventory and creating experiences that customers remember and want to interact with, that’s how retailers will survive.
To see all the ways TIBCO is helping major retailers digitally transform with the TIBCO Connected Intelligence Cloud, visit our new Retail page.