Darwinian theory has long been used to explain who wins and who disappears in a competitive business world. Thus digital Darwinism was the concept Planet Retail used recently for a webinar, called “Survival of the Fittest,” discussing Digital Transformation in retail.
Miya Knights, Planet Retail’s Technology Research Director, said that changing consumer habits are driving the trend toward online retail. “There are currently 3.5 connected devices per person and that is set to double by 2021,” she said.
The online momentum often tempts companies to take a small stab at digitalization; such as creating a mobile app. But the real key to Digital Transformation is not the implementation of isolated initiatives that involve the odd digital channel. It is a wholesale strategy that spans the entire business and approach.
Key trends creating the need for digital transformation include:
- Moving to new multiple channels for both customer interaction and selling.
- New forms of competition with things like marketplaces and internationalization.
- Ever increasing customer expectations.
Digital transformation is focused on using technology to reduce cost, increase revenue and manage risk. It offers the ability to enable innovation, differentiation and drive efficiency.
Digital transformation serves to marry online and offline retail, but what does this mean? Retailers need to embrace wholesale change to their entire business model in order to marry the offline world with the online. This means adding new technology, because enterprise application software does not have the ability to deal with the latest innovations.
The webinar advocated a platform approach to utilize integration, real-time analytics in order to drive increased agility.
There are three strategic goals that have been recognized by retailers as important:
- A real-time view of inventory throughout the supply chain. Planet Retail said that 76% of retailers desire this - right now. It is a fundamental requirement.
- Blending digital technologies with the physical retail experience is something that 75% want to achieve.
- And 69% want to empower associates to engage meaningfully with the shopper, making the “retail moment” happen in store and online.
You can learn more on the webinar.