There’s no question that a lot goes into a successful retail strategy. With a million moving parts—including marketing, store layout, product selection, pricing, and much more—it’s a challenge to keep customers engaged and keep sales growing, especially in this ever-competitive space.
The best bet is to look toward those who are getting it right, and learn how they’re doing it.
Understanding customer data is a key part of any successful strategy, according to a 2018 report by Deloitte and SalesForce. The survey offered insight into how elite performers not only focus on data, but how they use technology and enterprise systems to better collaborate and manage data in a functional way.
One big problem facing many organizations is that they've been unable to gather and analyze the data they do have in a way that is meaningful. According to the survey, 32% of brands are challenged with customer engagement and discovery, and 24% have difficulty with awareness and acquisition—yet they don’t have a defined method of organizing data to solve these issues.
Another major differentiator is that 63% of underperformers are unable to respond to consumer demands and insights quickly and efficiently, leaving them constantly playing catch up. On the flip side, “seven out of 10 elite performers are agile enough to quickly respond to consumer demands and insights…and 72 percent continually gather information on consumer expectations, trends, and feedback.”
By leveraging technology, such as AI, VR/AR and machine learning, these elite performers are able to mine data holistically, knocking down silos and creating better collaboration across teams and retail partners.
Virtual solutions are big part of this retail renaissance, especially when it comes to data. Why? Because mixed reality—including virtual and augmented reality—creates a disruptive way to visualize and evaluate shopper preferences through simulated store environments and shopping exercises.
Take the two challenges above: leveraging data in a meaningful way, and responding to consumer demands quickly and efficiently. These are both mitigated through virtual solutions. Because VR allows users to gain both attitudinal and behavioral insights from real shoppers, retailers and brands can compare different concepts and learn which will perform best with customers—before creating anything in the physical world. This provides a way to look at the data and determine what steps to take before spending time and resources on something that may or may not translate in the store.
It also means that visualizing, evaluating and then sharing data is faster, and more collaborative than ever. At InContext, our enterprise platform, ShopperMX™, allows users to quickly evaluate concepts within days—creating an agile and continuous test and learn approach to shopper insights. And virtual means users can share images, videos, and immersive store walk-throughs from anywhere in the world.
Data, and the sharing and interpreting of data, is obviously a huge factor in retail success today. Those who are considered “elite performers” know this and are already incorporating technologies, like VR, into their go-to-market strategies. Want to learn how you can start leveraging cutting edge technology to better mine and leverage data?