• Business
  • 17/10/2020
Top 5 Challenges Currently Facing the Retail Sector

Every market has its portion of challenges, and any entrepreneur should know this. The retail sector is an area that can be hard to penetrate and even harder to survive. In recent years, the industry has experienced certain shifts that have transformed how things work. Businesses had to adapt, especially when it comes to the dominance of online retail. It's not enough for a retailer to hire a managed service provider to help with an online presence. Retail business owners have to understand the various challenges and prepare adequately for them if they are to capitalise on the available opportunities in this sector. We are firmly in the age of digital disruption and nowhere has this had more of an impact than within the retail sector. So, what are the biggest challenges facing the space currently?

Effects of Digital Disruption

The internet made it possible to provide online shopping solutions, and this is one element that has turned traditional retailing on its head. E-commerce stores meant that people no longer had to go to a physical building to get what they need. This evolution caused a major disruption. Suddenly, retailers had to figure out ways to appeal to an audience that cherished the convenience of online shopping. Rather than consider e-commerce platforms as threats, retailers are merging online and offline enterprises. With the right IT infrastructure management services, retail companies can set up online systems to complement their physical locations. Doing this offers customers the alternative to pick the most appropriate means of purchase. Leveraging multiple channels gives retailers the chance to reach a large audience that is not limited geographically.

 Maintaining Customer Loyalty

Convincing a customer to spend money at your store is challenging, but the real task is getting that customer to keep coming back. If you can secure it, the loyalty of your customers means everything. It is an assurance that, regardless of the enticements out there, a buyer will return. The problem for retailers is that customer loyalty takes time and patience to build. Retail businesses also have to deal with a lot of competition. At any one time, there is a brand out there marketing to your customers, convincing them they are worth spending money on. The higher the competition in the market, the harder it is to retain customers. Retailers can craft innovative ways to appeal to customers and inspire loyalty. In the age of big data, companies have access to a considerable amount of information about their customers. They can utilise that data to create offerings that are all about the consumers. A customer who feels appreciated by a brand will not have trouble remaining loyal.

Concerns about Security of Data

Speaking of leveraging customer data, retail enterprises should be careful about how they do that. As much as the digital age brought incredible benefits for companies and consumers, it also opened up a world of concerns. As businesses look to improve customer experience by exploiting data, they go too far sometimes. Cases of retailers misusing customer details are more common than the sector would like to admit. You might have noticed it yourself - getting emails from different brands advertising a product because you were shopping for it earlier. Such practices make customers wary when it comes to providing their information, and that only makes it tougher for retailers. Work with your managed service provider to ensure that you provide data security measures that make customers feel safe.

Finding the Right Technologies

Modern technology, such as POS platforms and customer management software, has had a positive impact on the retail industry. The solutions that retailer have access to now are designed for maximum efficiency. Issues arise when it comes to finding the correct technology. Not every CMS out there will suit your customer needs. The wrong technology can cost your business money, time and energy. Take, for instance, an on-premises POS system that requires extensive training and an in-house IT team to provide ongoing management and support. It can take a while before the technology attains its value. Retailers should comprehend the requirements of the business properly so that they can find technology that contributes to the bottom-line.

Siloed Marketing Networks


Retail enterprises operating in today's environment have a multitude of channels for marketing that range from smartphones to social media. The ever-increasing marketing platforms provide businesses with many opportunities to interact with their consumers. Besides selling, retailers can learn the purchasing behaviours of customers. They can also get feedback on brands. A downside to this convenience is that all this data comes in a silo. You have information coming in and out of different platforms, which can be overwhelming. Retailers must learn how to structure their marketing teams to reconcile the strategies of different platforms. Understanding marketing silos will help you avoid bombarding customers with information.

The retail sector offers prospects to grow a business, but only if you can deal with the challenges effectively. Integrating digital technology is one of the biggest hurdles. IT infrastructure management services like those offered by Fifosyscan help drive your retail enterprise into success.

 

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