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We undeniably live in a data-driven world. If you want to get ahead and retain customers, making the best use of the information at hand is vital. While many retail businesses have a wealth of data at their fingertips, ensuring that it is analysed and implemented is an ongoing process. Here, we look at some of the ways that data is being used across retail. 

AI is here and here to stay…  

With higher volumes of online shopping comes more data, which means the emergence of Artificial Intelligence. The next generation of insights is here, and their ability to create tailored customer experiences are exciting. As per DataRobot, at least 70% of retailers are expected to adopt AI in the next two years. Here’s why:  

Utilise your existing data – many retailers have data-rich processes but are yet to unlock its potential, with 2/3 retailers claiming their greatest challenge is utilising their data. The uses can be endless; from planning your upcoming promotions and when to run them to choosing your next store location, data enables you to work smarter, not harder.  

Operational excellence – what operational team hasn’t questioned what can be done better? How many hours have been spent pouring over data looking for quick wins, big wins and that extra 5%? AI is helping retailers discover three times the gains in their efficiencies, saving time, resources, and even cash. 

Increase your revenue – each element of a retailer’s processes is under scrutiny to be more cost-effective, including any investments. Thankfully, AI is proving to increase revenues up to 31%.  

The Power of Personalised Marketing  

Setting yourself apart from the crowd could be as simple as understanding your customers better. In fact, according to recent data, a massive 80% of consumers are more likely to buy from brands that offer a personalised experience. Fortunately, you can use data-driven insights to determine what it is that your customers expect and need from you.  

Inevitably, more customised content increases your marketing spend, but the added value for customers could be the difference between them spending with you or a competitor. Insider Trends offered the following insight into how retailers are creating this more customised experience:  

  • Create personalised recommendations based on customers’ search histories.  
  • Customise your website based on the customer profile so they can access relevant items quicker.  
  • Show products suited to their sizes and tastes. (Maybe you’ve already noticed a little note on your recent shopping experiences online: ‘you usually purchase this size’).  
  • Advertise on their social media feeds based on their viewing of your website.
     

The possibilities that come from social media alone are endless. Facebook IQ’s report on the next era of hybrid shopping encapsulates the power of social media platforms perfectly: ‘With social feeds increasingly curated to personal tastes, these platforms act as tailored catalogues for shoppers to find products or brands that they may never have known existed before. It works too: 84% of shoppers purchased in-store after finding or discovering the item on social media.’ 

If that list isn’t exhaustive enough, we are seeing the entire marketing mix (the 4 P’s) utilised –let’s look at the product element. Customisable products and solutions are more popular than ever. Even major global brands notorious for their consistency are offering levels of personalisation. Take McDonald’s; whilst no longer in play; they launched the “create your taste” option across restaurants worldwide, letting customers build their perfect McDonald’s burger for the first time, a great example of mass personalisation.  

We don’t have to look in great detail to find many more current options for personalisation, from designing your own football boots with Nike, editing your Moet Champagne label, and getting your name on a jar of Nutella or a Dairy Milk bar.  

On that note, we’re heading to the snack cupboard as we look towards the next instalment which focuses on the role of collaboration in the future of retail.  

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DDC OS in Retail 

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