Future of Retail — Omnichannel

issue 07

“Social media is a key channel for customers to complain, to interact with loyalty services, and customers are comfortable sharing data across their social apps and platforms to engage with brands that resonate with them.”

grow across UK, Republic of Ireland, Germany, Austria and Finland with new markets in the pipeline with increased member sign-ups and of course, more valuable data and insights.

HOW RETAILERS CAN GET FUTURE PROOF My key hints for retailers to become future- proofed lie in three areas. The first is in integrating mobile marketing with loyalty and CRM. You probably touch your phone close to 100 times a day and that’s the consumer we have to work with! We created Thor Mobile allowing retailers to start employing push notifications via beacon technology and geofencing, working with apps as well as mobile sites. If reward and loyalty are on your mind, then you 100% need to get a mobile strategy that makes it possible to deliver these rewards in a way that feels seamless, regardless of device or touchpoint. The second is getting some sophisticated

retail led analytics to sit within social media. Tapping into work with influencers, video and virality, social media has to meet POS and CRM in the middle and shouldn’t be syphoned off as a marketing activity. Social media is a key channel for customers to complain, to interact with loyalty services, and customers are comfortable sharing data across their social apps and platforms to engage with brands that resonate with them. Using sophisticated analytics within social media should be a key strategy for retail IT teams. My third tip that covers both of these

would be to look at POS systems as a marketing communications channel and to invest in integrated tech that works fully synchronised with the POS with everything

else layered on top – a full communications management function, offline detection, offline and online processing, fraud detection, and security controls. We created ThorLink to act as the gateway between the POS and our Thor CRM and processing platform to do just this. This integration gives an incredible real-time 360-degree view of a customer, down to item level in the basket, the rewards they are due, their engagement, their loyalty and their propensity to purchase. As you can imagine, getting a handle on this big data will affect your supply chain and stock decisions, your marketing planning and how you engage with customers from social, in-store through marketing communications to your help desk or call centre. You could move away from an investment

first model and start to track down to a product level. The possibilities are only limited by what data you can capture to start with. My view is that loyalty and customer

experience should be at the heart of all your actions as a brand and the right technology and tools make that possible. It’s why we love working with big brands at Tranxactor, because the businesses all have their own unique ways of working, goals and ethos. At a point, we step back and get to see the amazing results. Finally, I will say that a bright retail future

is also dictated by the speed you can create organisational change – and great tools alone are insufficient. Organisational adaptation and stakeholder buy-in, to understanding and using analytics in a serious way across the organisation will be what delivers the real large-scale benefits.

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