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Technology Opportunities in Retail for 2018

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Hari Krishna,Chief Operating Officer

People have not ceased buying things. Instead, a radical shift is seen in shopping behavior and lifestyle of customers. For these reasons, the retailers are left concerned about accommodating the evolving shopping preferences into their existing business models. Brands need to stay abreast of the latest technology opportunities that can significantly boost their industry presence and increase conversion rates. As per reports, 2018 will be the year of rapid advancements in the retail sector.

 

Technology Opportunities in Retail 

Personalized Experiences  

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According to 2018 Intelligent Retail study by Microsoft, nearly half of surveyed consumers said they likely would become repeat buyers after personalized experiences, yet only 22% of shoppers find their retail experience to be highly personalized.

 

While retailers are concerned about going digital, the essence of digital business lies in merging both the physical and digital worlds. Today’s digital business calls for unified commerce or omnichannel retailing to retain the competitive advantage over others. This convergence is vital because the brick and mortar world is still significant for a majority of customer groups. 

Product and channel personalizations are the keys to provide the utmost personalized experiences. Technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT) and Augmented Reality are helping customers to customize their products and even the way it is delivered to them. Some prominent collaborations that are transforming the delivery channels can be seen with Audi-DHL, Doddle, and Sears. From now on, retailers need to devise a strategy to merge both the physical and digital experiences. To achieve this, they will need support from experienced Technology Partners with solid industry experience.

 

Integrated Marketplace

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Accenture analysis of leading brands reports that products sold as ‘on-demand services’ increase a retailer’s addressable market by 50-125%. 

More products will be sold in an integrated marketplace. Sensors, wearables, and other intelligent digital devices form a mesh of digital retail world. This form of an integrated marketplace is the future of retail business. By understanding customer behavior and desire, the retailers can respond right away to them with personalized products through customized channels. This type of a value creation through an interconnected marketplace and intelligent response should be the focus for retailers. Brands need to continuously interact with customers to analyze their behavioral patterns across multiple platforms. The interaction should not be limited within the boundaries of online media but further, expand to their brick and mortar stores and other marketplaces.

 

Intelligent Retail 

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By 2019, about 40% of retailers will develop a customer experience architecture supported by AI, boostingconversionsup to 30% and revenue by 25% through hyper-micro personalization.

In the coming years, data and intelligence will go hand-in-hand for retailers. This year will witness a large scale deployment of Artificial Intelligence, Big Data and Advanced Analytics. The early technology adopters can seize a distinct place in the long run of technology innovation. A notable example is the intelligent brick-and-mortar store Amazon Go. The customers are provided with a frictionless shopping experience that has always been a burning need. Furthermore, AI will impact every touch point of the retail business and empower retailers to take insight-driven decisions. 

 

Conversational Commerce 

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By 2020, 50% of retail customer service requests will be conducted, at least partially, through conversational AI application. 

AI-powered chatbots and digital assistants will dominate nearly half of the retail sector. Conversational commerce will play a crucial role in building valuable customer relationships in the future. The notion of conversational platforms has greatly evolved from mere chatbots to intelligent voice-based personal assistants over the past few years. Almost every customer personally prefers these digital assistants for its flexibility and convenience. 

 

Conclusion

The retail world is booming with new technology opportunities. In this scenario, there is a higher requirement for capable industry and technology professionals who can identify the scope and convert it into an opportunity. At SayOne, we continuously strive to keep our partners abreast of the latest technology updates and support them in their digital business. For retail, our core focus has always been on providing personalized customer experiences and increasing user satisfaction. 

 

Stay tuned for more updates and opportunities in the retail world!