Find out the future trends and technologies that are shaping the retail industry and how Columbus can help you keep up with them.
I was witnessing and being at the center of the world’s most important retail conference where industry executives from across the globe learn the retail trends and get an unparalleled view into how retail brands of all sizes are transforming themselves for the digital age. I’ve curated the Top 3 technology trends that are and will be shaping the future of the retail industry.
1. Artificial Intelligence (AI)
According to the report, IDC FutureScape: Worldwide Retail 2018 Predictions, 37% of retailers are already adopting or plan to adopt AI for customer experience personalization in the next 12 months. The IDC report also suggests that by 2019, 40% of retailers will have developed a customer experience architecture supported by an AI layer. Therefore, it was no coincidence that AI took the spotlight at the NRF 2018. Artificial Intelligence is being used and will be used throughout the product/service lifecycle in innovative ways. There are many success stories in the following categories in retail where AI has yielded an increased ROI – sales and CRM applications, customer insights, manufacturing, logistics, and payments.
"We depend on AI to keep us on upward trajectory." - @TommyHilfiger
IoT solutions can help retailers gather more data on customer behavior in stores. The rise in sensors and other connected devices is increasingly contributing to the rapid growth of IoT-enabled capabilities across the retail industry. IoT can track products and help to gather data on product movement and customer interaction trajectory with the products. This analytics helps forward-thinking retailers integrate both digital and physical and design hyper-personalized customer experiences. Analytics also helps retailers in product movement information – which products are being sold or moved which in turn could help the sales associates with inventory management.
"Customer and behavior data can help retailers retool technology to improve services."
3. Cloud Computing
Cloud computing was quite the buzzword in NRF2018. Keynote speakers and participants vouched for the cloud technology to be able to improve customer experience, economically and improve business processes. The retail industry is seen to be embracing the cloud technology not only enabling retailers to get better insights into business performance but is also proving to be the cost-effective way to develop a product. Implementing cloud technology requires low-cost development tools thereby allowing retailers to save money.
As we witnessed the future of the retail industry in the big apple, organizations like Microsoft and Adidas are making digital transformation dreams come true, putting the customers in the middle of the story. As NRF2018 reiterated, we also brought back the saying that ‘Customer experience is going to replace Product and Price’. We, at Columbus, have been working with leading retail customers to deliver an integrated environment where you can manage your entire business and all its retail channels, easily scaling to support growth in terms of customers, products, transactions, and target market. We know that the retail industry is moving quickly and after witnessing the future of retail at the NRF2018, we are sure that our right mix of solutions, business insight, and expertise will enable you to take control of your retail business.