Since its inception, the retail industry has faced many competitive disruptions. Retailers have had to adapt to mail order catalogs, specialty boutiques, big box outlets, strip malls, enclosed malls, franchising, online shopping, digital transactions with pop-up vendors, and shopper preference algorithms.
Yet, even with the move to digital retail platforms, customers’ still need to purchase some products in-person. As the old saying goes, you can’t get a haircut online. So, how do retailers compete with online sales & marketing?
Retailers need to know how their customers’ shop, where and why they buy an item, and what they expect from a shopping experience – both online & in-person. Those retailers with a competitive edge can collect, sift through, and analyze all their data streams, enabling them to adapt to changing market conditions.
The Office of Finance in a retail company must have the capacity to deliver what managers want to know – how each store is doing on a comparable basis, versus what they planned. This information must be readily available, allowing retailers to understand and quickly respond to challenges and opportunities. Finance teams can also use this data to direct management decisions on corporate structure & acquisitions, and on sales & marketing budgets.
Therefore, to effectively discern where your retail business is winning and where it’s losing, your business needs to have a single picture of the financial truth. Retailers that adopt a Corporate Performance Management (CPM) system can exploit their competitive advantage by inputting and combining all their data from disparate systems.
These companies can then identify the data collection processes that their finance teams can automate and integrate into their CPM software to a create a true picture of their business. A picture that they can respond to in real-time, seizing opportunities and mitigating risks as they occur.
To learn more about CPM software for the retail industry, read our whitepaper.