4 Important Ways the Retailer-Vendor Relationship has Changed

Asian woman shop owner - young Asian woman store owner carrying shoe boxes at store

The last two years have seen dramatic changes in the retailer-vendor relationship. Supply chain shortages caused by the pandemic are still reverberating throughout retail operations.

While the online channel unsurprisingly grew in response to imposed lockdowns, the less-popular hybrid shopping model known as “click and collect,” also gained tremendous momentum.

Retail Pro’s customer ACFC was able to make BOPIS a reality early on in the pandemic thanks to Prism’s data integration and total inventory visibility.

And, although shopping has returned to pre-COVID routines, supply chain issues remain. Here are some ways retailers are handling post-pandemic challenges.

The Product Journey to the Customer

delivery man holding box up as person receiving it signs an ipad

Dropship is more popular. Published statistics show that the global dropshipping market is forecast to reach $196.78 billion in 2022, a substantial increase of  23.7 percent from 2021.

That number is expected to continue to rise, reaching $243.42 billion next year.

The uptick in retailers needing to fulfill online orders during the past two years is a big reason for the dropship surge.

Retail Pro’s ability to streamline inventory visibility across all channels and give retailers a single view makes it easier for them to reduce the margin of error in fulfilling online orders.

Retailers Expanding Retailer-Vendor Relationship

Female Inventory Manager shows digital tablet Information to a male worker holding cardboard box, explaining how their retailer-vendor relationships work

Retailers have expanded their footprint to include marketplaces such as Amazon and Alibaba, as well as social platforms including Tik Tok and Instagram.

Miniso’s UK branch was able to experiment easily with selling on Amazon in the face of tough challenges brought on by COVID with Retail Pro Prism, opening their understanding of future operations possibilities

In fact, TikTok has been experimenting with shoppable ads and shoppable livestreams indicate its readiness to compete for retailers’ attention with Instagram and Facebook.

That has boosted brand awareness not only for the retailer, but also for the supplier. As product demand increases, however, shortages sometimes occur.

Expanding selection through third-party relationships. Some large retailers, notably Lands End, Hudson’s Bay and Anthropologie have begun their own marketplaces.  

Those retailers feature channels on their websites that allow select third-party brands to sell products directly to their customers. It increases selection while letting the retailer avoid increasing the number of vendor relationships they must manage.

Automation of Operations

A female Asian retailer looking over her store's automated inventory across channels

Increasing workflow automation. Reducing or eliminating the manual creation of reports regarding orders, stock levels, and sales trends, and automating that process can accelerate the receipt of information regarding potential stock shortages.

That is particularly helpful when earmarking stock for in-store purchases; for ecommerce order fulfillment and for pickup by click and collect customers.

Automation reduces errors and makes data collection more efficient. Retailer Saleem Fabrics was able to automate their inventory to lessen challenges brought on during COVID with the help of their Retail Pro Business Partners at System Plus and Retail Pro’s software plugin capabilities.

The best supplier-buyer relationships require collaboration. Retailers and their suppliers must be committed to the long-term pursuit of value.

Working with Retail Pro and our partners means a retailer has engaged support and help to take any steps necessary for the sorts of modernizing changes in operations mentioned above.

Together, retailers and their partners are employing innovative solutions to offer joint opportunities to create and retain significant value.

Retailers turn to expanding physical footprint post-COVID with regional support from Retail Pro Business Partners

Retail Executive group talking strategy to expand as covid risk and restrictions decrease

After two years of isolation, customers are ready to visit retailers, and stores are more than ready to greet them as they look to expand operations.

Anticipating pent-up demand, retailers are looking at not just beefing up their square footage but also global expansion to meet customers’ demands for exceptional selection and outstanding experience.

The recent past has been tough on retailers: COVID magnified existing weaknesses, accelerated emerging trends of increased online shopping, and forced organizations to adopt new technology faster than they had anticipated.

Approximately 40 million workers were furloughed or laid off as demand dipped and factories and offices were closed to prevent the spread of the virus, according to Deloitte

Additionally, people stopped traveling and leaving their homes to shop: Business Insider reported an 82.6% year-over-year foot traffic plunge for the week ending April 18, 2020. E-commerce took hold as brick and mortars complied with government mandates to close.

Retailers that had entertained physical expansion plans in 2020 quickly course corrected and invested in online sales platforms to try to make up lost revenue. That strategy – which included click and collect and curbside pickup — helped many physical locations remain in business.

As the pandemic waned and retailers reopened, they started streamlining operations to ensure that their physical stores were in sync with their online systems, which had become more robust during the last 24 months.  

Retail Pro Prism’s omnichannel retail management platform gives retailers the tools to monitor their inventory across channels, keeping in-store and online records in sync. The operations were often merged into a hybrid store/warehouse, in which online orders could be fulfilled by the stores’ brick and mortar locations.

Strategies to expand revisited

A group of retail management/operations professionals brainstorm and strategize new ways to expand after covid

With those new logistics in place, retailers are once again considering and moving ahead with physical expansion. But, for the largest, most well-known names, creating more big stores isn’t in the game plan.

Instead, smaller, more boutique-type stores that focus on the customer experience is the winning strategy.

Take Nordstrom’s, which even prior to the pandemic offered curbside pickup and has continued to strengthen its integration between online and offline channels.

Nearly five years ago, Nordstrom Local launched. The stores are roughly 3,000 square feet and do not carry dedicated inventory, but instead are focused on service: Amenities include complimentary personal stylists, eCommerce order pickup, returns, alterations, gift wrapping and complimentary refreshments.

Betting that less space could pay off more was a good gamble: On average, a Nordstrom Local customer spends 2.5 times the amount of a regular Nordstrom customer. 

The retailer sees the locals as a way to complement their existing larger stores, and cater to customers more conveniently.

Post COVID, many shoppers are looking for convenience, particularly when at brick and mortars.

The fundamental reasons for shopping in person haven’t changed: They enjoy social interaction and they want to interact with products before purchasing.

However, shoppers may now be a bit more exacting in what they expect from retailers’ service.

Businesses looking to expand their physical footprint must be certain that their existing software can handle the new load.

POS software, in particular, must be scalable in order for the business to remain efficient.

Retail Pro Prism is a scalable, comprehensive software package that can be cloud-based and offers remote support — ideal for an expanding company.

For example, Miniso UK currently has seven stores and has plans to grow its business with Retail Pro Prism to 50 stores in five years.  “As you grow, you need clear visibility on all parts of the business and we want to ensure we’re not letting down one side of the business at the expense of the other,” said Miniso UK’s Chief Operating Officer, Saad Usman. “To be successful, we have to develop the online and offline experience simultaneously, which we’re trying to do.”

Growth Requires Local Support

Woman wearing headset, supporting retailer in their region on their mission to expand

Once software requirements have been established, retailers should consider their support options. Having local IT partners can help ease concerns and create an atmosphere of camaraderie.

Retail Pro has a Global network of local IT support partners in 130 countries, helping their clients with implementations, integration of retail solutions including loyalty, ERP, ecommerce etc.

Local partners also know the region better than anyone, so they can assist with localization of the software for language and branding, and are familiar with legal requirements, such as fiscalization (fiscal law aimed at preventing retailer fraud) as well as tax reporting.

Retail Pro is compliant with regional fiscal and tax requirements such as VAT used in many regions globally, India’s GST, Canada’s GST/HST and Brazil’s ICMS, and various tax zones.

In addition, any software that a growing retailer selects should be “expansion-friendly.”

Retail Pro’s robust API provides centralized flexibility that adapts to local regulation variations, allowing retailers to customize their retail POS systems to specific regional requirements.

For more than 30 years, Retail Pro has provided a base platform and API that supports regional requirements, which are specific to a retail management system and point of sale.

From the UX –where local language support is key– to the more complex needs of taxation and reporting requirements, localization has and continues to be part of Retail Pro’s DNA.

Globally, language can also be a business barrier. Because all languages have a vernacular, idioms and regional “quirks,” Retail Pro has a fully translatable user interface, so translations can be tailored toward local dialects for a given region, specific business or vertical type.

Finally, partnering with the right IT solution provider is critical for retailers’ success domestically and abroad – and the right fit can help both companies grow, especially if they operate with similar values. 

Authorized partners are not only trusted technology advisors, but they are also serving as IT project managers for store launches in different regions of the same country as well as coordinating store launches in new countries.

Establishing mutually-beneficial goals motivates all parties. Post-COVID, analysts expect the global retail market to reach $39,933.3 billion in 2030, up from nearly $20,331.1 billion in 2020. Retail implementation of regionally-savvy software and partnerships with local solution providers will be crucial for success.

Take Another Look at Sustainability

earth growing green foliage because of sustainability practices

Sustainability means serious business to a new generation of customers.

Business sustainability is far more than using recycled plastic in shopping bags or motion-sensing lighting.

It’s not a feel-good buzzword. Rather, it’s a way of doing business that considers the effect companies have on the environment or society.

Sustainability – from Millennials & Gen Z to Mainstream

a stack of clothes from different fabrics with a tag labeled co2 neutral Carbon neutral, CO2-free concept product to signal sustainability

For Millennials and Gen Z customers, sustainability includes reusability.

Thrifting or “resale marketing,” is popular with this group, and the secondhand market, including clothing retailers such as Poshmark and ThredUp, is thriving.

The similar concept of “circular fashion” considers the entire lifecycle of a garment, from how it’s made to ensuring its durability so it can ultimately be passed to several owners.

 Established brands are joining the party; for example, Patagonia’s “Worn Wear” program offers credits toward new items when customers trade-in gear.

With Millennials representing $600 billion in spending power and Gen Z at $140 billion, their preference to shop sustainably can’t be ignored.

Increased appetite for sustainability

Woman who cares about sustainability with shopping bags in studio on yellow background isolated

Not every product can be reused, however, so looking at responsible, “green” ways of manufacturing continues to be important.

What has changed, however, is that customers are more willing to pay for sustainable products. For example, last July, a survey from First Insight and Wharton’s Baker Retailing Center of more than 1,000 U.S. consumers found 68 percent of them willing to pay more for sustainable products, up from 58 percent from a survey taken in 2019.

That’s a compelling argument for retailers to create, source, and sell more sustainable goods.

Sustainability and cost incentives

packing away products to ship with brown cutout paper to increase sustainability

Sustainability aligns with business goals as well – and though many small and midsize retails are leading the charge, it’s not solely the purview of smaller companies.

A great example is “Amazon Day” when the behemoth retailer packages into one weekly delivery, chosen by the customer. That’s a huge savings in gas costs for Amazon, while it reduces environmental pollution.

In addition, Amazon has committed to produce 100,000 electric vehicle delivery vans for Amazon through 2024.

Brick and mortar retailers that provided enhanced delivery and customer pickup services might consider reducing the resulting carbon footprint by bundling packages for customers, which will consolidate the number of delivery/pick up trips.

Employees and sustainability goals

employee at sustainability-conscious artisinal

Finally, companies that embrace sustainability as a key purpose may be better positioned that their competitors to attract motivated, skilled workers that drive financial success.

Everyone likes to rally around a common goal, and employees with shared purpose are likely to be more satisfied at work – and happy employees are great ambassadors for your business.

Let’s Talk About Omnichannel Returns

Female Inventory Manager Shows Digital Tablet Information to a Worker Holding Cardboard Box. In the Background Stock of Parcels with Products Ready for Shipment.

The customer journey may always start with shopping, but it doesn’t necessarily end on a happily-ever-after note. Sometimes, the item just doesn’t meet expectations and the customer makes a return.

The return rate for the retail industry in the U.S. and Canada averages 8% of total sales, according to retail analytics firm The Retail Equation.

Returns are a “reverse logistics problem,” but also a fact of life for retailers, which cost time and money.

Because of that, it seems counter-intuitive to invest in improving the returns process — but it’s absolutely imperative. Having a good returns experience can help retain customers, and gaining a reputation for it can actually attract new shoppers.

It’s estimated that between 25 and 50% of online purchases are currently returned, so making the process simple and convenient is vital.

Retail flexibility for returns is a must in the omnichannel: after all, the customer can buy in any number of channels, so returns should have similar options as well.

In having omnichannel capabilities for customers to make returns, retailers can use the return as an opportunity to immediately offset any costs of returns. The retailer can use clienteling through whatever channel the return process is started; suggesting products in line with the general trends of their purchase history.

With a wealth of plugins available, Retailers can customize their omnichannel operations to offer return processes that are convenient for customers and work seamlessly with their retail and inventory management.

Order Management and the channels for returns

Female seller worker online store holding scanner scanning parcel barcode tag packing ecommerce return post shipping box checking online retail store orders in dropshipping delivery service warehouse.

Once a return happens, being able to make that addition to inventory available soon after receipt increases the opportunity of achieving a full-price sale.

An order management system can provide instant visibility of returning goods, regardless of how they are being returned — to a store, through a courier service or directly to a warehouse.

In addition, having visibility of these items available allows the order management system to develop fulfillment decisions on how and where items should be sold to maximize profits. 

A survey from Inmar found that most shoppers want to return in-store, largely due to the hassle of packing up a return.

Brick and mortars can benefit by enabling in-store returns of online purchases, as that drives store traffic and provides an opportunity to immediately recapture shoppers’ initial expenditures. Approximately 30% of Inmar survey participants said they “usually” or “always” stay in the store and shop with their refund money. 

AppCard for Retail Pro provides a retailer with great tools for building personas for retailers various clients and personalize recommendations for them.

The future of returns and making them easy

A shopper holds up a new dress to decide whether to return it or not.

Some e-commerce retailers such as Amazon make the return experience easy by requiring little to no packaging by the customer, allowing returns in different store locations, including return shipping labels in deliveries, as well as a QR code that can be used at a predetermined courier, which also increases efficiency for the retailer

Returns are an important element of a new online sales cycle: Increasingly, shoppers are employing a “buy and try” approach and they expect sellers to cooperate.

Research has found that much of the returns growth is due to shoppers purchasing more than one of the same or similar products with the intention of keeping one and returning the others.

Retailers must recognize the changing role of returns, understand that they will likely increase rather than decrease due to this new customer mindset, and optimize their processes to adapt and maximize customer satisfaction.

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Scaling Omnichannel Operations for Connected Experiences with Retail Pro Prism

Woman shopping on her phone in front of the same storefront which has omnichannel operations

Customers love retailers with omnichannel strategies. Shopping is on their terms: They can choose the time, the location and – if they change their minds – the way to make the return.

No longer are the channels online stores and brick and mortars; today, a brand can also sell products through pop up storefronts as well as Instagram and Snap Chat.

It’s all about connecting with customers at their convenience.

When retailers give customers the flexibility to choose the way they shop, they are also able to connect and provide personalized promotions and timely recommendations. OptCulture for Retail Pro opens up the ability to create personalized promotions and loyalty programs by unifying customer data across channels.

With so many points of engagement between customers and brands, scaling operations is challenging.

Today’s shoppers don’t consider brick and mortar and online stores separate shopping destinations. Instead, they expect unified experiences across every touch point. Retail Pro Prism makes it possible to offer this convenient, omnichannel buying experience.

Order Management and flexible fulfilment

a woman picks up an order from an omnichannel store with omnichannel operations

Order Management is critical for a holistic commerce strategy. It connects omnichannel demand to omnichannel supply.

Buyers have insight into inventory across all sales channels, accurately and in real time.

Retail store associates, dropshippers, warehouses, distribution centers and third-party fulfillment providers use commerce technology to fill and deliver orders efficiently.

A system that has communication between each channel and allows seamless management of inventory and stock replenishment to take place is important for providing omnichannel and minimizing strain on your supply chain and operations.

Determining the best fulfillment options means finding solutions that shorten the distance to the customer, increase delivery speed, and reduce costs.

The omnichannel model emphasizes shipping from decentralized inventory sources, such as ship-from-store, buy online pick-up in-store, ship from a partner, or drop-ship from a manufacturer.

Making the right decision improves customer service, because delivery is quick, accurate and cost-effective. Ensuring the ‘last mile’ is optimized by collecting the data in a centralized visual analytics tool saves you money, time, and frustrated customers.

In a warehouse fulfillment model, orders are picked using a variety of methods, including discrete, zone, or wave picking or any combination.

Filling orders from a store limits the type of picking that can be done and retailers often use discrete picking and fill one order at a time. The benefit to in-store picking, however, is the proximity to the customer, who may opt for curbside pickup, eliminating shipping charges.

Curbside pickup has its advantages for shoppers in a rush but for retailers, enticing customers inside to make additional purchases has bottom-line benefits.

However, Pick-up-in-store customer personas are different from an online-only or in-store-only customer personas: They want immediate gratification — they can’t or won’t wait for shipping. 

This is a demanding group that generally has little tolerance for friction during pickup. Therefore, clear, precise messaging about when the order will be ready and instructions for pickup are imperative. The pickup process can be made even more streamlined and convenient with Retail Pro Prism mobile POS.

And the pickup purchase process should be quick and easy for customers and employees. Customers’ perceived value of in-store pickup will evaporate if they can find the item on the floor faster.

Inventory management strategies and shipping

asian woman shop owner - young asian woman or shop assistant with shoe boxes at store

Shipping from the store can get customers their orders delivered more quickly. But other times, the warehouse is closer to the customer.

Having the option to ship from one location or the other is critical for flexibility and to keep customers satisfied.

In-store cycle counting can help by keeping inventory counts up to date and confirmed, so at fulfillment time products are where they are expected to be.

When they aren’t, sometimes items have simply been misplaced: an RFID system can help locate them very quickly. With RIOT RFID for Retail Pro, retailers can locate items out of the line of sight and complete inventory counts in a matter of minutes at an affordable price.

Customers have high expectations of how their shopping experiences should unfold, and retailers have a full plate managing and fulfilling orders while recognizing the unique characteristics of every consumer.

What delights one customer may not work for another. Retailers must be flexible and willing to implement customer feedback to create an efficient, intuitive customer experience that, ultimately, is profitable.

Retail Pro Prism POS gives you the flexibility and customization needed to connect your physical and digital store experience: offer customers fulfillment options, empower associates to order specific products from another store, discover shopper insights, and more.

NRF 2022: Meet stock availability expectations across channels with Retail Pro Prism

In the shopper’s mind, your website reflects your store, so they look online for stock availability.

Some may complete the purchase online, but others may want to see the products in store first or pick it up as one to-do item on a longer list.

Save your customers from the poor experience of showing up at your store with the website’s promise of having the product they need – only to find that you’re out of stock.

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Unify inventory information across channels with Retail Pro Prism

a sales woman viewing stock - inventory of a certain box of teas using a mobile POS tablet
  • See inventory in the warehouse, in transit, in the back room, or on the sales floor
  • Update in-store inventory counts online by integrating ecommerce with Retail Pro
  • Keep accurate inventory counts with integrated, affordable RIOT RFID for Retail Pro
  • Leverage in-stock items from your other locations to save every in-store sale

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NRF 2022: Simplifying the omnichannel purchase journey

Woman hands bag of various items of dishes to retailer. Beautiful woman shopping tableware in supermarket. Manager helps a costumer with returns

Omnichannel is about making it easy for customers to buy from you, get their products from you, and make returns.

A shopper’s purchase journey goes through multiple stages and retailers must think through the omnichannel experience at each phase.

  • PRODUCT RESEARCH PHASE How do the online and in-store experiences complement each other to help shoppers get a tangible feel for the products they’re exploring?
  • PRODUCT PURCHASE PHASE How can we best simplify the path to purchase to win more sales and avoid losing customers due to out of stocks or poor experiences?
  • PRODUCT FULFILLMENT PHASE What are cost-effective ways to get customers what they’ve ordered?
  • PRODUCT RETURN PHASE How can we streamline the omnichannel returns experience for shoppers?

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Streamline omnichannel orders & fulfillment with Retail Pro Prism

POS kiosk with orange/coral background featuring woman laying down wearing pearls and orange tinted sunglasses

Improve efficiency in operations needed to support your omnichannel retail environment for more efficient omnichannel operations.

  • Connect all points of purchase for efficient order management and fulfillment
  • Execute on BOPIS and curbside pickup with mobile POS
  • Keep accurate inventory counts with integrated, affordable RIOT RFID for Retail Pro
  • See inventory in the warehouse, in transit, in the back room, or on the sales floor

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NRF 2022: Connecting your physical and digital store experience

Building an omnichannel strategy brings up myriad details to think through:

  • Can customers see store stock availability online?
  • Do both e-commerce and in-store purchases score points for loyalty?
  • Can we tap into our inventory sold elsewhere for an in-store endless aisle?
  • What is the process for restocking returns from online purchases?
  • How will we handle picking and fulfillment for orders placed in-store?
  • How do we improve shopper experiences with what we’re learning from our data?

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Request your consultation now >

Retail Pro Prism: Platform POS & retail management technology

tablet and desktop POS

Take control of omnichannel store operations with flexible Retail Pro Prism POS and retail management software.

  • Get total data visibility across the enterprise worldwide
  • Centrally manage and regionally tailor all your subsidiaries and locations
  • Go global with localizations for any world language, currency, and tax structure
  • Dig into integrated POS & ERP data to get the right products to the right stores
  • Empower associates to get answers for customers with lookup and orders on mobile POS
  • Discover shopper insights with unified POS, ecommerce, website, and social media data
  • Act on insight with AI-powered personalized marketing and promotions
  • Get full POS functionality on the desktop or mobile device of your choice

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Stock Inaccuracy and Omnichannel Operations

retail worker carrying boxeslooking at phone evaluating for stock inaccuracies

How much stock inaccuracy can you actually get away with in omnichannel operations?

Not much, in fact, very little. If a customer places an order online and doesn’t get it within the expected delivery window because it wasn’t in stock, odds are high that customer won’t be returning.

Likewise, if a website tells customers a product is available “in store” and it isn’t, that experience will erode customer loyalty. Understanding why those errors happen is key to preventing them.

Omnichannel operations that POS systems such as Retail Pro Prism give retailers lessens the likelihood that these scenarios that are detrimental to customer loyalty and business overall will occur by updating the inventory across channels automatically.

Challenges in the world of instantaneous omnichannel

With omnichannel fulfillment, online orders are filled from brick and mortar store locations. This type of fulfillment provides retailers tremendous flexibility: For example, customers can buy online and then pick up their orders directly from the store, or retailers can have inventory shipped from a fulfillment center to the customer.

Using stores to fill ecommerce orders offers advantages such as:

  • Faster delivery
  • Increased profit margins
  • Lower shipping costs
  • Fewer returns

Problems arise when retailers use the store to fulfill online orders but don’t account for a scenario in which a single item is sold twice: once online and then again in the store. Such sales generally happen simultaneously – or close to it.

Omnichannel encourages different order types, such as retail orders, e-commerce orders, or wholesale orders, but they all must be filled from the same inventory stock.

That’s why it’s critical to have a system that communicates with each channel, allowing seamless management of inventory and stock replenishment.

Safety Stock and Dropshipping

Female Inventory Manager Shows Digital Tablet Information to a Worker Holding Cardboard Box, They Talk and Do Work. In the Background Stock of Parcels with Products Ready for Shipment.

Safety stock is always held by traditional and ecommerce retailers to buffer against the supply of an item and its demand.

While a high safety stock level means a retailer is more likely to be able to respond to uncertainty, the carrying cost also increases. The amount of safety stock must therefore be carefully considered. Inventory management is crucial for companies to contain costs and remain profitable.

Dropshipping, where a store doesn’t keep the products it sells in stock, can help alleviate out-of-stock scenarios. Orders are passed to their suppliers, which pack and ship orders directly to customers.

Dropshipping eliminates the middleman and reduces the timeline to delivery. If a retailer has limited stock in-store to fill online orders, it can use dropshipping from its suppliers to deliver orders seamlessly to customer.

Research indicates that dropshipping in omnichannel leads to increased revenue as well: Inventory is handled by suppliers or manufacturers, freeing up shelf and floor space at retail and eliminating costly holding expenses.

Omnichannel fulfillment helps retailers provide customers the best service at the best prices. That’s a potent combination that leads to loyalty at a brand’s digital as well as real-world outlets.

With Retail Pro Prism, you have access to omnichannel operations that become more and more necessary with every year, and to every integration your business might need for existing or new sectors of your operations along the way.

Optimizing the omnichannel experience in your stores? Let’s talk.

Request a consultation with an Authorized Retail Pro Business Partner in your region or watch a brief demo of Retail Pro Prism today to see how you can transform the luxury experience in-store with omnichannel operations built on with Retail Pro Prism.

Meeting Stock Availability Expectations Across Channels with Retail Pro Prism

retailer taking account of stock in the back room

Ecommerce got an enormous boost during the last 18 months, as shoppers’ health-related concerns ramped up online sales as they took to shopping from the safety of their homes. But with vaccinations rising and people feeling more confident in being able to safely leave their homes, customers are headed back to brick and mortars.

However, customers’ expectations have been heightened during the past 18 months.

In August, Mastercard Spending Pulse reported that U.S. retail sales excluding automotive and gasoline increased 8.1% year-over-year, and 7.7% compared with August 2019. 

Clearly, customers still want an in-store experience for certain items.

Retail Pro Prism is a modern and easy to use POS software and retail management system that makes the last impression, at the point of purchase  – the most consistent thing across the board – an easy, flexible interaction.

Using Retail Pro Prism on mobile devices enables your sales associates to complete a sale at any spot in your store, making for a more personal and meaningful exchange.

Omnichannel Expectations and Inventory

However, they also want some of the retail enhancements that came about due to COVID protocols. For example, customers want to find stock availability in store when on a retailer’s website. Driving out to the store without inventory knowledge is unnecessary and frustrating.

Having omnichannel operations that allow customers to purchase items on their own terms is key to gaining their loyalty. Retail Pro Prism sets up retailers for omnichannel operations they can personalize to their own business needs.

Receiving inventory information is the ticket to admission customers want.

Enhanced inventory visibility allows associates to know where any product is at any time, and also provides the customer with real-time inventory views across all store outlets.

With Retail Pro Prism POS associates have visibility across stores and channels, and can go further in helping customers if they’re unable to find a certain color or size in one store.

Inventory Visibility Benefits for All

retailer in back office looks at inventory

While associates can see stock location within warehouses and the supply chain, customers can use the insight to determine the best available fulfillment option of their orders, including-ship to-store, BOPIS, curbside pickup, or delivery.

Why do customers prefer in-store purchasing then, when an online purchase is in many ways easier? Because customers want:

  • Immediate fulfillment
  • To verify the product is what it appears to be – dimensions, color, etc.
  • To support local merchants

According to enVista’s 2019 survey, 67% of consumers consider inventory visibility across stores, online and mobile is an important service to offer. An optimized supply chain and POS solution are imperative to obtain accurate physical inventory counts that reconcile with the data that reflects what’s on the floor.

Innovations and Customer Experience

Woman smiling down at her smartphone, a white digital illustration of a brain connecting out to circles of different functionalities representing AR, VR and inventory innovations

Having enjoyed the innovations retailers came up with to entice and satisfy customers during the lockdown, shoppers are eager to continue – and enjoy enhancements to — many of the new conveniences.

As retailers recover from the restrictive lockdowns of the past year, sales associates are focused on delivering a superior customer experience.

That includes providing real-time product availability to avoid the disappointment of customers arriving at the physical store who find that the website’s promise of product availability was not kept.

Omnichannel inventory management eliminates any hesitation consumers have around the purchase relating to stock levels, timing and convenience, enabling customers to purchase with confidence.

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2022 Retail Technology Show?

26-27 April 2022 | Olympia, London | Stand 6e28

About Pinnaca Retail & IT Solutions

Founded in 2015, Pinnaca Retail & IT Solutions is a family-run business offering retail solutions, specialist management consultancy and IT services. Our company is UK based, with offices in London, and a client base across the globe.

We work with all levels of business to define and develop strategies focused on our clients’ needs and objectives. Our tailored solutions are developed and optimised to fulfil your key business demands.

Over time we have added to our 20 years’ experience in the field and built up a team of experts, with a wide range of experience and in-depth knowledge, who are eager to help your business succeed and grow.

About DataScan Retail Systems

Datascan Retail Systems are a leading UK and European supplier of solutions to the retail sector, from small businesses through to mid-tier and international enterprises. We have vast experience in the analysis and design of retail IT and the implementation of EPOS and Stock Control Systems and provide all the services required to plan, implement and maintain an effective Retail Management System. We are committed to match the Retail Pro System to the exact needs of the retailer, utilising our development, training and help desk teams.

About RIOT

RIOT is turning traditional RFID solutions for retail on their head with RIOT Insight​. Insight is RIOT’s real-time inventory accuracy service offered as a simple but powerful add-on to a retailer’s existing systems. 100% inventory accuracy to support Omni-channel is now yours on demand.

About PAR

PAR Technology Corporation provides industry leading software and hardware solutions that are always there when you need them but never in your way.

  • State of the Art Point of Sale Systems.
  • Tablets and Portable Devices.

About XRetail

XRETAIL is a Global leader in Unified Commerce solutions, with a prime mission to empower enterprise retailers by helping to boost their sales and retain their clients. Through state-of-the-art technologies, integrations, and solutions, the XRETAIL platform creates unified sales channels including eCommerce, Mobile commerce, and Social commerce. XRETAIL’s Cloud-based platform creates seamless end-to-end solutions allowing enterprise retailers to blend brick-and-mortar and digital retailing into one unified platform, with notably enhanced customer experience both online and offline.

About Loqate

Combining leading technology with the richest data, Loqate provides several solutions to help bring businesses across the globe closer to their customers:

Address Validation
A faster, easier way to capture and verify addresses in real-time for your online forms and checkouts.

Email validation
Increase email delivery rates, boost customer marketing and reduce bogus registration when you verify email addresses upfront.

Mobile & phone validation
Take the guesswork out of reaching customers. Capture the right phone number, mobile or landline at the point of entry.

Data maintenance
The foundation of any customer management strategy, Loqate’s cleansing and maintenance software helps build lasting customer relationships.