by   |    |  Estimated reading time: 4 minutes  |  in Business Technology, Creativity & Innovation, Retail, Strategy, Supply Chain   |  tagged , , , , , ,

An omni-channel transaction may be triggered on a smart screen, but delivering on it depends on end-to-end goods visibility, planning and forecasting supply, demand and inventory all in real time. To truly deliver personalization across channels, retailers’ suggestions come from the same source: their enterprise resource planning (ERP) system.

Omni-channel capabilities are making it easier for retailers to personalize their services—touching the hearts and winning the minds of individual shoppers, wherever they are. Combining sophisticated cognitive computing science with personal service, personalization is a smart art, helping retailers move beyond inaccurate mass discounts to capture new sales and loyalty.

Successful retail businesses are thrilled, not threatened, by the thought of what’s next. For them, knowing what’s waiting around the corner is an opportunity, not a challenge. Yet knowing what customers are going to want next is all about how well we know what they have wanted before—and how easily we can access data on it. Your sales teams are only human. Even your top-performing sales associate will not be able to remember everything about a customer’s purchase history or serve them around the clock, but digital personalization will.

18% of customers feel promotions or offers are important

What is digital personalization and why is it important?

Today’s very best personalization solutions are not the product of one algorithm, but are, like the human personality, a multi-layered hybrid. Drawing on millions of data points, they create a nuanced 360-degree picture of your customer, knowing when to inspire and delight them, and when to back off.

Personalized offersHow can retailers achieve the increased spend that deeper customer knowledge generates across all of their channels? The fact is, it’s already happening. In an omni-channel retail environment, multiple digital touchpoints, advanced metrics and ever-powerful algorithms mean retailers can know, more than ever before, what their shoppers want and when and where they want it. When omni-channel touchpoints are connected to a robust ERP logistics and supply chain backbone, they not only know what shoppers want—they can deliver it, seamlessly, too.

The takeaway is clear: bombarding customers with generic offers and discounts that have little relevance to them can be dangerously counterproductive —whether through phone screens, inboxes or letterboxes. When it comes to driving sales, quality not the quantity of information is key. It’s not how much information you send out that drives conversions—it’s sending out the right information. The best-personalized offerings address the right priorities at the right time, making customers feel seen and heard—helping them feel less like an ‘anybody’ and more like a ‘somebody.’

51% of customers are frustrated by the lack of personalized services

Why ERP systems are the building block to personalization

In today’s hectic retail market, it can feel as if everyone is talking to shoppers, but few are listening to them; everyone is informing customers, but few are really inspiring them; everyone is chasing shoppers, but few are paying them premium attention.

Whether a tablet, kiosk or interactive holo-screen, no matter how empowering an in-store portal is for a sales clerk—for a customer, it has to do with just one thing—deliver—and delivering comes from the quality and real-time reliability of the retailer’s data throughout their operations.
Delivering to the customer
An omni-channel transaction may be triggered on a smart screen, but delivering on it depends on end-to-end goods visibility, planning and forecasting supply, demand and inventory—all in real time. So, a robust, reliable ERP system remains the foundation, the building block, when it comes to delivering omni-channel and personalized offerings. No ERP, no delivery. No delivery, no personalization. To truly deliver personalization across omni-channels, retailers’ suggestions come from the same source: their ERP system.

ERP is to artificial intelligence (AI) what the body is to the brain. It is the musculature and the circulatory system of the retailer’s operations that is able to deliver whatever the restless, in-store brain dreams up next.

79% of customers say friends influence their purchases most

Personalization empowered by IFS

With personalization empowered by IFS, we can help you to provide a truly personalized customer experience. To learn more about personalization in retail, read the “Personalization: the human touch, any place, any time” white paper. You can also ask us questions below in the comments section.

Do you have questions or comments about delivering personalization in retail?

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2 Responses

  1. Steve Treagust

    Steve Treagust

    Topical and on the money Ulf, thanks. One question, how is the increasing requirement for personalised services being managed against the new and more enhanced personal data regulations coming from the EU?


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