READY FOR ANY SALES CHANNEL: THE ERP SYSTEM FOR RETAIL
Retail has undergone significant changes in recent years. According to a report published by the Hamburg World Economy Institute (HWWI), the specialist retail segment has been the hardest hit, losing the biggest share of total retail sales. Negative trends have also been seen in department stores, traditional high street grocers and supermarkets. In contrast, market share has been gained by discounters and big box stores. Customers are also buying more online. According to figures from German retail researchers IFH Köln, B2C e-commerce revenue rose to just under EUR 43 billion in 2014 – representing a market share of 9.4%. IFH analysts expect this share in all likelihood to rise to 15% by 2020.
OMNICHANNEL SALES AND PERSONAL COMMUNICATION
In light of these tendencies, all retail companies should concentrate their efforts on expanding their bricks-and-mortar stores with other sales channels – and online in particular. Nor is that all. Today it is also important to achieve tight integration of channels, so as to offer customers a 360° purchasing experience. A comprehensive, omnichannel approach is therefore imperative. Customer loyalty, however, needs the multichannel approach to be accompanied by personalised communication. And this is possible only with systematic collection and analysis of customer data.
SUCCESS FACTOR DIGITAL COMPETENCE
Alongside convincing products and solid service, digital competence is already a key criterion for success in retail. Long-term market share is open only to those who efficiently manage sales processes across all channels while utilising customer data. The cornerstone for this strategy is an ERP system that supports all process flows in modern retail.