Consumer preference and shopping habits are continuing to evolve, with more consumers preferring experiential retail over traditional retail. There will always be a demand for products and services, however the types of products demanded by consumers is always changing, with consumers wanting more variety, more customization, faster methods of payment and express delivery options.
This is challenging for retailers, as meeting these ever-evolving demands will require not only investment of time and money, but also changes to their operations and supply chains to make them more optimized. This includes optimizing the organization of the supply chain to ensure the costs of transport and storage are kept low, as well as using better methods of managing inventory through analyzing data.
For middle market retailers to compete in this ever growing and more competitive market, they will need to be more protective of their own brands and be aware of the shifts in pricing. Taking advantage of their already existing brick and mortar stores is one way of doing this, as having a physical store for customers to experience is something customers want. Many of the online only retailers are now realizing this and have begun to open brick and mortar stores to capitalize on the physical customer shopping experience.
HOW DOES SAP BUSINESS ONE AUTOMATE SUPPLY CHAIN?
SAP Business One simplifies definition and management of production, assembly, sales, and template bills of materials (BOMs). You can store BOM numbers, descriptions, warehouses, and item compositions in easy steps, while recording per-item quantities, production issue methods, prices, and comments at each level. When you add a bill of materials to purchase, production, or sales orders, pricing and quantities are automatically recorded for both the product and its components. SAP Business One supports standard, special, and disassembly production orders. Bills of materials can easily be entered into production orders so that item availability, warehouse location, and issue method are automatically recorded. By storing a production due date, production scheduling can be managed using alerts management in SAP Business One.
Technology and the internet are the common denominator when it comes to all the trends within the retail sector. Retailers will be able to better understand the requirements and demands of their customers, thus improve the customer experience, through analyzing data generated by technology and customer interaction. Therefore, retailers will be able to successfully build a strong and loyal following of long-term customers by creating identifiable brands that have more value than just price competition.
Despite the benefits of using technology to improve brand loyalty and the customer experience, there are some important things to consider, such as data protection and security of user’s sensitive data. Many big companies have already felt the pain of data breaches, resulting in large fines by regulators and damage to their brand image. Retailers must take data regulations, such as the California Consumer Protection Act and the General Data Protection Regulation, very seriously in order to prevent data breaches that can result in loss of confidence in the brand.
In the long term, new technologies such as 5G will be something for retailers to consider, as 5G technology will provide room to innovate and generate more opportunity. Data processing capabilities and bandwidth limits will be greatly increased with 5G, meaning better customer experiences using additional technology.
One example is the potential of augmented reality; consumers will be able to see a near unlimited number of products in virtual aisles, try on clothing in virtual fitting rooms and a whole lot more. Full adoption of 5G technology will take several years, even though the immediate benefits the technology provides is very clear.
HOW DOES SAP BUSINESS ONE CONTROL ORDER FULFILLMENT & INVENTORY MANAGEMENT?
SAP Business One ERP system maintains full control over your order fulfillment and inventory management. In addition, SAP Business One should make the customer shopping experience as convenient and enjoyable as possible, with instant e-mail confirmation, timely shipping notification and access to their account information, when needed.
2020 will be a year where retailers are selective with their capital investments, brought on by global economic issues like trade wars, uncertainty in the stability of the global economy, and the high use of discounting and promotions in retail. This will force investors to look for other ways in which they can obtain value and generate more opportunities from businesses.
There will be less of an emphasis on growth through traditional brick and mortar stores, and smarter, more highly targeted approaches to acquiring new customers and increasing conversion rates will be explored for creating more value. Investment will need to continue to flow into methods that allow retailers to make their processes more efficient and increase engagement with customers.
Due to physical stores needing to follow the new retail models, it’s likely they will be a lot smaller in size than traditional megastores, thus costing less and releasing cash to fund capital projects. More access to funds will be available to retailers who combine a strong business strategy with a well-executed digital strategy.
HOW DOES SAP BUSINESS ONE MANAGE ECOMMERCE?
SAP® Business One — Fashion One provides complete integrated management of your business. This platform was specifically designed for those in the apparel manufacturing, distribution, and import business. Manages finished and raw material inventory, cut tickets, allocations, open-to-sell, accounts payables & receivables, financials, UPC codes, EDI, eCommerce and much more.