Lack of data is rarely a problem for retailers; the issue is getting data sets to mingle.
Physical stores have their own set of data on the popularity of items, sales details, and so on. Online stores generate similar data. Increasingly, the Internet of Things allows stores to track even the smallest customer actions, including which items were picked up and put down. This data comprises a gold mine of insights if used right—and that’s a big if.
Too often, the data is stuck in separate silos. These physical, departmental, and political silos keep data from interacting with other data. As many businesses have learned, it’s seeing all of the data—the big picture—that provides the most valuable insights.
Pulling together all the data helps connect the dots. Let’s pretend a group of mothers search and shop for their children’s new toys, clothing or healthy food at different points of the day using a different set of devices, such as desktop computer and mobile phone. At 9pm this group of mothers shift to using a mobile device to research and to purchase. Spending marketing dollars on this group during the day may not be as effective as mobile add displays starting at 9pm. Without the search, ecommerce, and customer segmentation data pulled together and analyzed at different dayparts, retailers are operating without a holistic view of the business.
Similarly, store managers need to easily analyze current store performance and how that impacts staffing levels to ensure products are on the shelves and customers are experiencing superior customer service. If performance is not up to par, store managers must be able to ask “why” and simply drag and drop to uncover the answer.