Navigating the rapidly evolving world of retail

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In today’s highly competitive post-Covid retail landscape, efficient operations which enable retailers to deliver the most competitive prices and enhance customer experience, have become essential to the sector.

Retail organisations that can adapt quickly to market changes and enhance customer services, whilst reducing operating costs, are the companies that will grow and prosper – whilst other market participants risk crumbling under increased competition from online retailers.

Retailers are facing stark competition from e-commerce giants, and a sharp drop in footfall due to COVID-19. To survive, many have invested in new scalable online stores and big data analytics. As Deloitte stated, “The online and digital retail world is no longer the sole preserve of the agile startup or online pureplay business. We have begun to see the major established retail businesses fight back by embracing digital themselves. The modern retailer’s journey into digital sees them adapting their core, exploring digital products and experiences.”

To keep up with the pace of change required to remain relevant and competitive, retailers are having to evolve their IT strategy at a previously unimaginable pace.

Simply put, retailers must drive rapid digital transformation to build differentiating omni-channel customer experiences.

Retailers need to retire legacy systems as part of digital transformation. They must think about new store concepts which provide customers with convenience and exceptional experiences, including self-checkout devices and the latest POS hardware. Office Depot, LOTTE Department Store, and ElectronicPartner, are just some examples of retail brands that have done this successfully.

Agile delivery of seamless in store experiences for customers, along with an integration between online and physical offerings, has shifted from novelty to necessity.

For years, the retail industry has focussed primarily on reducing cost and increasing operational efficiency. But now, with the power of choice back in the hands of consumers, retailers must be willing to speed up innovation, focussed on customer experience versus margin expansion.

To achieve this level of modernisation, retailers need to consolidate IT operations and rethink their strategies.

Forward-thinking retailers embrace a more innovative way to build, deliver and manage applications across their entire enterprises, understanding that this is the only way to create the customer experiences they need to win. They’ve also realised that no matter what you’re selling, technology acts as a powerful differentiator in delivering experiences to customers.

At SUSE we help retailers around the world such as Office Depot, LOTTE Department Store, and ElectronicPartner to build the IT operations they need to understand customer behaviour, anticipate needs, and offer personalised services in an environment protected by robust security.

Whether it is achieving zero downtime and saving millions that can be reinvested into digital transformation, or driving increased stability and simplicity that creates more time for innovation – SUSE has a big role to play.

The future of technology holds so much potential. We are entering an era where the worlds of cloud and edge computing will collide, which will generate numerous possibilities to make businesses more agile and efficient.

For retailers, this means edge users will be able to push the cloud to local devices irrespective of location. This year, there will be increases in new, purpose-built apps and devices, which will extend digital transformation even further to warehouses, restaurants, retail forefronts and more.

SUSE and SUSE Rancher products are powering this retail revolution, shaping Retail 2.0 and giving ambitious market participants a competitive edge and the ability to achieve sustainable growth. To learn more about how SUSE is helping retail customers innovate from the core to the cloud to the edge and beyond – as well as achieve their business goals – click here and watch this video.

 

 

 

 

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Melissa Di Donato
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