Digital transformation has been, for years, one of the biggest challenges facing the company, be it large, medium or small. The fourth industrial revolution that Klaus Schwab named includes an unprecedented technological development in which digital tools take on a predominant role. In this context, the retail sector is obliged to reinvent itself and adapt to a new type of business organization and new consumption dynamics.
Resistance to digital transformation in retail
Up to 90% of retail companies have a well-defined digital strategy according to some studies such as The Digital Transformation PACT. However, at CapKelenn we find a lot of resistance to this digitization by highly qualified professionals: “that is something very complex”, “now we do not need it”, “we cannot stop to think about new technologies at the moment”. These are some pretexts that hinder a modernization whose results are amply tested.
Before continuing to read this article, ask yourself the following questions: Are your customers the centre of your business strategy? Do you record all interactions with customers and draw conclusions about their purchasing dynamics? To what extent are the supply chain data with e-commerce data? Could you further automate internal processes?
These questions are intended to sow the seed of self-awareness, just as we like to do at CapKelenn. So that you are the one who reflects on how to run your business, get the most out of digital tools and set up a team focused on excellence. All that with the aim of accompanying you in the digital transformation of your business. Below we will give you some guidelines.
Optimize digitization in the management of your business
The digital transformation in retail must begin within the organization itself, questioning traditional management models and evaluating which new systems would add value. It is about integrating the “world off” and the “world on” to provide an omnichannel experience.
Omnichannel is a very consistent global brand experience from one channel to another, so that the client takes advantage of all digital resources (such as social networks, web, blog, etc.) to buy. This multitude of channels requires a solid internal coherence to turn the purchase into a holistic experience.
Thanks to automation, you will get rid of tedious manual processes and be able to focus on aspects such as omnichannel, which do generate value for the business. This digitization includes, for example, the integration between the supply chain and e-commerce data. So you can have an adequate level of stock, streamline purchase orders and control the supply of products with higher turnover.
The analytics provided by digital tools allow us to know purchasing patterns, product trends and customer habits. In this way, we can predict the degree of acceptance that a new product will have, the level of demand according to external factors, and even customize special offers for each client.
Digitization in the customer relationship
Digital transformation in retail is also a paradigm shift in the relationship established with the customer. Users spend a lot of time with their smartphones and tablets, so these tools are a powerful ally for our sector.
Have you tried creating WhatsApp groups to offer special promotions? This is one of the most used applications and originality in the way you use it can make a difference. For example, the WhatsApp Video function is useful to show the physical store and its products to a potential customer who has no availability to approach personally.
WhatsApp facilitates the relationship with consumers during the digital transformation process. Just as it can be used as a sender, it is also important to take care of our role as a receiver. Such a widely used application is an ideal way to receive suggestions about the shopping experience, comments on products and even (why not?) complaints.
In this sense, the transparency of the post-sales service is beyond doubt. The contact system must consider the “usability” factor and we, as an organization, owe the client an agile, concrete and satisfactory response.
CRM: Retail ally
A CRM (Customer Relationship Management) is a computer system that facilitates the company / client relationship. Traditionally, physical cards have been used to collect customer data manually. The Internet was a revolution and databases began to be used in programs such as Excel or Access. Digital transformation involves a further step and many businesses opt for these systems.
A CRM enables the digitization of data regarding customers to get to know them better: interests, modes of behaviour in the store, time preferences, favourite means of contacting the company, etc. This way we get an exhaustive profile of each consumer and the strategy we build around them is more precise and personalized.
Although sometimes computer systems may seem complex, a CRM operates in two simple phases. As we have seen, in a first phase it collects customer data related to a multitude of factors. The type of business that applies this system will determine the relevance of one or the other factors, since the needs are not the same for a restaurant as for a perfumery. In a second phase, the CRM guides the specific actions that the business must take.
Consequently, the data does not remain in the air, but is translated into specific and personalized strategies to accompany each client before, during and after the purchase.
Digital transformation in your team
Digital transformation in retail must also have the training of the work team. Employees have to imbibe a methodology equipped with a wide variety of digital tools. The objective is to bring up the figure of the connected seller: connected to the tool, to his client, to the time.
His training in the different digital applications that are part of the corporate strategy is essential to build a “phygital” store. This concept is explained by Benoit Mahé, PCC coach and master in NLP, in the following video (English subtitles available):
Not too long ago, the point of contact with the customer at the point of sale was the time of payment at the cash register. Today, when we talk about the connected salesperson, we mean an advisor who is interested in the customer’s concerns. To accompany you on your purchase, to make suggestions and recommendations. All this in a physical environment that incorporates the digital world in its multiple aspects. Thus, the technological devices available to the customer help them turn their shopping experience into a game, something fun and dynamic.
To sum up
At CapKelenn, we encourage you to join the digital transformation in your business. The retail sector cannot lag new technological trends. Precisely, the fundamental characteristic of retail, direct contact with the client, requires adapting the attitudinal patterns of consumers. If it is clear that technological devices have a potential in all aspects of social life, points of sale are one more vector of that reality.
Gone are the excuses that block taking a step further. Digitization provides an opportunity to align with new trends and thus connect with an increasingly demanding audience.