"You Cannot Manage What You Don't Measure"
This saying has been around in the business world for decades, but it remains true, even in the technology-driven modern retail landscape. Shoptalk 2018 showcased certain trends that would be prominent in the marketplace, and as we approach Shoptalk 2019, it's important to measure what has happened over the past year. Brands should be poised to go into the next retail year knowing what needs to change, what still works, and how to manage every asset from analytics to inventory to brand reps.
One of the major takeaways from Shoptalk 2018 was how to make the most of data. The amount of data generated by consumers is massive. Sales figures, customer loyalty trends, and inventory management are no longer just by-products of sales and consumer behavior; those data points are actual currency. In the keynote address at Shoptalk 2018, Google president of retail and shopping, Daniel Alegre, stated, "Data is the backbone of retail."
Google’s method of acquiring and utilizing retail data was to roll out a shopping platform that drives web traffic to certain retailers via Google Express. National retailers including Walmart, Target, and beauty products giant Ulta have joined with them and early results show that retailers are seeing sales increases. For a fee, Google Shopping Actions will show a partner’s brand and products across the Google platform of devices including Google Assistant and Google Home.
Technology will always need to be moving forward, but what about in-store sales? Retailers who are chasing the online marketplace can sometimes neglect what is happening on the sales floor, because they aren’t measuring that data. Consumers make 70% of their retail purchases in brick and mortar stores. What can your brand do to get a good percentage of those customers putting your product into their carts? It's all about the data, and ThirdChannel's cloud-based retail analytics platform can optimize the numbers from inventory, sales, brand rep engagements, store associate feedback, and turn raw data into strategies that enhance the customer in-store experience and increase sales.
Let's suppose your company includes fashion and sports performance sunglasses at a mid-range price point. It's an item that most consumers want to try first. The in-store experience is crucial for this kind of product and the Field Management Tools designed for your brand by ThirdChannel can provide a detailed snapshot of what is happening at the point of sale and beyond. Store associates need access to the massive amount of information that is just waiting to be mined. ThirdChannel can curate that data and create a private activity feed that brings every bit of information, from loyalty program details to sales figures, inventory management issues and even supply chain strategy.
Perhaps in one store, sports eyewear is leading the pack in sales. How do you get other locations to use that data as a benchmark for their own sales? By providing your entire team, those on the frontlines as well as the back of house employees, with what they need to know. The constant flow of product data from the sales floor to the rest of your company is a crucial piece of your retail strategy. Data was a primary focus of ShopTalk 2018, and that will likely be the case this year as well. Has your brand been able to use the millions of retail details that are just waiting to be harnessed?
Smart brands will always be the ones measuring for better management. Data is the cornerstone of this process, and ThirdChannel can help you implement a solid strategy that will focus on making your brand the talk of the shops.