Big Data Paves Way For Suc­cess in Re­tail Boom

PCQuest - - CONTENTS - – Gau­rav Khu­rana, Chief Mar­ket­ing Of­fi­cer PAY­BACK In­dia

The re­tail sec­tor is un­der­go­ing a trans­for­ma­tion at a fast pace with chang­ing con­sumer dy­nam­ics and pur­chase be­hav­ior pow­ered by one of big­gest game chang­ers in the his­tory of re­tail­ing – the era of Big Data An­a­lyt­ics. This is a plat­form that puts the cus­tomer first at ev­ery step of the de­mand and sup­ply chain. The only thing we need are the fa­mous drones to fly by and drop your shop­ping at your doorstep! Whilst we wait for this mag­nif­i­cent re­tail mir­a­cle to come by, let’s take a look at In­dia’s re­tail story.

In the bur­geon­ing re­tail sec­tor filled with mul­ti­ple op­tions, lu­cra­tive deals, and of­fers, cash-backs and loy­alty points, Big Data An­a­lyt­ics rules. En­gag­ing the ever-so-well-in­formed cus­tomer of to­day is be­com­ing a ma­jor de­mand in re­tail­ing. Brick and mor­tar stores and on­line stores are all com­pet­ing to cater to the same cus­tomer and be­gin­ning to strate­gize their stock keep­ing and sea­sonal re­quire­ment through pre­dic­tive an­a­lyt­ics col­lected over mil­lions of trans­ac­tions and buy­ing dy­nam­ics on a daily ba­sis.

The re­tailer of to­day is smart, savvy and armed with tools that en­able them to log­i­cally plan sea­sonal sales and pre­dic­tive buy­ing by an­a­lyz­ing buy­ing be­hav­ior re­gion­ally, na­tion­ally and glob­ally. They can fore­cast de­mand us­ing al­go­rithms that track mil­lions of trans­ac­tions ev­ery day which is item­ized and this helps col­lect data on fa­vorite brands, pop­u­lar prod­ucts, and fast mov­ing items. This way they can track the de­mand for goods and de­ter­mine when to drop prices by a sim­ple method of “mark­down op­ti­miza­tion”. Hence, giv­ing cus­tomers many rea­sons to re­visit them and re­plen­ish their sup­plies for daily need items, ap­parel, house­hold sup­plies, kids sup­plies, even hard­ware, and elec­tron­ics.

The sys­tem iden­ti­fies in­di­vid­ual cus­tomer needs and can en­gage each one dig­i­tally. This in­no­va­tion takes the whole shop­ping ex­pe­ri­ence to an ex­cit­ing level. The art of en­gag­ing cus­tomers starts by sim­pli­fy­ing the re­tail ex­pe­ri­ence by an­a­lyz­ing the de­mand for spe­cific prod­ucts, bundling in ex­cit­ing deals to en­tice the cus­tomer and fi­nally pric­ing the com­plete pack­age with ac­cel­er­ated re­wards to drive re­peat trans­ac­tions.

This new-age style of re­tail­ing is now shift­ing over from the savvy on­line stores to the brick and mor­tar stores where one can use loy­alty re­wards and pro­mo­tional schemes to pur­chase the items of their de­sire. The

dis­cern­ing mod­ern day cus­tomer is well-aware of this and ac­tively seeks such re­tail­ers at ev­ery step. It also adds great value to a cus­tomer’s pocket, thus build­ing en­gage­ment, loy­alty and creat­ing a de­mand within the ex­ist­ing ecosys­tems, which will fur­ther drive new cus­tomer ac­qui­si­tion through word of mouth, so­cial me­dia, ad­ver­tis­ing and many such com­mu­ni­ca­tion chan­nels used by the in­dus­try. When we look at this pic­ture from a global per­spec­tive, the whole game changes into big­ger de­mand, sup­ply, and pric­ing tech­nique de­vel­oped to con­sis­tently en­ter­tain the evo­lu­tion of the cus­tomer buy­ing be­hav­ior. In­ter­na­tional brands are do­ing ex­actly this, and this is their path to suc­cess. Bil­lions of cus­tomers who buy from the Ama­zon Global Store, for ex­am­ple; have opened the gate­way to a shop­per’s par­adise re­plete with of­fers, dis­count schemes, on de­mand ser­vices, prime de­liv­ery ser­vices to men­tion a few. Pre­dict­ing trends, an­other in­no­va­tive tool used by re­tailer to­day is hy­per-lo­cal per­son­al­iza­tion through in­te­grat­ing so­cial me­dia be­hav­ior and ze­ro­ing in on cus­tomer choices, most loved prod­ucts and brands, wish lists and dozens of ac­tiv­i­ties a cus­tomer may per­form on­line. Link­ing the re­tailer di­rectly to a cus­tomer, it also helps an­a­lyze the next pur­chase a cus­tomer is about to make, this is called “iden­ti­fy­ing the cus­tomer”. Armed with this, sea­sonal dis­counts, price op­ti­miza­tion, and grat­i­fi­ca­tions are of­fered to ex­cite the cus­tomer in the fu­ture. And if one were to take this to a per­son­al­ized en­gage­ment level, it’s only a smart choice to drive your cus­tomer to visit the phys­i­cal re­tail store for an all­round sen­sory ex­pe­ri­ence and add great value to the busi­ness. This all goes to prove that big data an­a­lyt­ics can have an in­cre­men­tal im­pact on busi­nesses. It sup­ple­ments the re­tail­ers with the power to build a stronger re­tail ecosys­tem that ben­e­fits con­sumers as well as the re­tail­ers. It is a fact that brands in to­day’s sce­nario need to mag­nify their vi­sion and look be­yond just fore­cast­ing data. To cre­ate his­tory, they must evolve as fast as their cus­tomers do. And this is only pos­si­ble when they prac­ti­cally de­ter­mine and de­liver the most de­sir­able and re­ward­ing ex­pe­ri­ence to the con­sumer. Big data plays a piv­otal role and pro­vides re­tail­ers with an un­prece­dented op­por­tu­nity to evolve and bring unique so­lu­tions to cater to each lifestage of var­i­ous busi­nesses.

“This new-age style of re­tail­ing is now shift­ing over from the savvy on­line stores to the brick and mor­tar stores where one can use loy­alty re­wards and pro­mo­tional schemes to pur­chase the items of their de­sire. The dis­cern­ing mod­ern day cus­tomer is well-aware of this and ac­tively seeks such re­tail­ers at ev­ery step.”

Gau­rav Khu­rana Chief Mar­ket­ing Of­fi­cer PAY­BACK In­dia

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