Retail Execution in 2022: Data-Driven

Stores with one-way arrows, masked consumers, and empty shelves were often alluded to as signposts warning that consumer shopping as we know it was ended, and that the present move to digital commerce would just accelerate with the start of the epidemic. However, according to current poll data, a big number of purchasers will continue to make in-person purchases and are even more dedicated to them than before.

Each month, Deloitte's State of the Consumer Tracker tracks consumer trends and provides insight into purchasing behaviors. Consider how, when questioned about their intention to shop in-store in October 2020 and then again in August 2021, customers said they planned to keep buying in-store at the same level or even increase:

From October 2020 to August 2021, changes in intention to shop in-store for the following items:

54 percent => 62 percent in clothing/footwear

51 percent => 59 percent in electronics

65 percent => 65 percent => 65 percent => 65 percent => 65 percent => 65 percent => 65 percent => 65 percent

82 percent => 81 percent for groceries

79 percent of households Equals 79 percent

63 percent => 70 percent in restaurants

Retail execution continues to be a key difference for businesses. Smart businesses are changing to fulfill client needs when customer tastes shift as a result of the pandemic or digital familiarity.

Changes in personnel are being made by several retailers in order to improve fulfillment or shop design in order to make them more interactive. However, although there's no denying that retailers' investment in improved execution is critical, just 29% of consumer products businesses say they're excellent at it.

Here are three suggestions to assist sales teams in achieving retail execution success.

Data should be captured and used

SalesForce discovered that high-performing sales teams are 1.5 times more likely to predict based on data-driven insights, therefore an integrated data strategy should be part of every retail plan. Data may be a crucial differentiator for consumer and packaged goods (CPG) businesses provided it is properly studied, shared, and integrated. The Promotion Optimization Institute's 2021 State of the Industry study indicated that inadequate data and insights was the biggest obstacle in restricted outstanding retail performance for 47 percent of firms.

Before, during, and after store audits, there should be a defined method for recording data. Consider how to collaborate with retailers and their data sources to get deeper insights and sales intelligence, in addition to basic inventory activity, merchandising, planogram, and promotion data.

A centralized stack for sales representatives also enables for more visibility into every stage of the sales cycle, including promotion compliance concerns, predictive inventory, store inspections and scoring, and access to personalized and interactive material at every rep visit.

Look for methods to simplify and innovate on a regular basis

Gartner's Top Trends in Retail Digital Transformation and Innovation for 2021, released over a year after the outbreak, emphasized the prospects in digital efforts and the numerous distinct ways suppliers may utilize them. Sensor-based shelving and logistics may help supply chains become more visible and provide real-time inventory control and analytics.

The deployment of "buy online, pick up in store" (BOPIS) across all channels resulted in a surge in income. Gamification, virtual and augmented reality, and guided selling teams are all examples of innovations that may be integrated into the sales process to improve both the customer experience and the performance of the field force.

Improved retail execution and consumer interaction may lead to better forecast guidance, timetables, communication, and overall greater sales, thanks to innovation.

Using technology, make the experience of sales reps more efficient

While digitalization is transforming sales, it is not a panacea, as surveys reveal that sales reps spend 62 percent of their time utilizing sales technology rather than actually selling. Field troops should not be required to be digital natives in order to do their duties, and companies should avoid adding to their load by merely increasing friction without delivering value.

Despite the development of sales enablement technology, many representatives claim they lack the tools they need to make choices at the store level. This is partly due to the wide range of retail sales applications – CRM, sales and market intelligence, lead handling and prospecting, analytics and reporting, order management, retail activity optimization, automation, and integrations – but it's also due to teams' lack of investment in proper training.

Too many tools are difficult to use and cause friction, causing salespeople to forsake new solutions in favor of personal workarounds. Consider centralizing the rep experience by giving them access to a single site where they can handle everything.

Though the outlines of the post-pandemic consumer purchase experience have yet to emerge, forward-thinking firms are preparing for the new normal via digital efforts. The aim of in-store optimization hasn't changed, but teams may now use digital technologies to help them succeed.

Thanks to Mert Yentur at Business 2 Community whose reporting provided the original basis for this story.

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