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Unifying commerce in Brazil: Retail Pro at ABF Franchising Expo 2019

 

 

Recently Retail Pro International’s Authorized Business Partner in Brazil, PA Latinoamericana, participated in the 27th edition of ABF Franchising Expo, the largest franchise fair in the world.

 

 

Brazilian publication GBLjeans reports, “American retail management software platform, Retail Pro International, has chosen a local distributor, with fashion as one of the key business segments. With this new local distributor, Americana Retail Pro International intends to gain greater participation in the Brazilian market.”

 

 

Together with some of our key partners in retail technology, Targit, SAP, Toshiba, and Adyen, Retail Pro offers retailers in Brazil and all over the world a unified platform to help their business keep improving retail performance and customer experience in their stores.

 

 

PA Latinoamericana CEO, Allan Pires, comments, “We at PA Latinoamericana are really proud of all the work that’s been performed here in Brazil. Having recently partnered with Retail Pro, it is clear that we have a great path ahead of us.”

 

 

Over 400 visitors came to the booth to hear how they can build unified commerce on Retail Pro to reach better results and grow their business.

 

 

 

Event photos courtesy of PA Latinoamericana and Ramo Sistemas Digitais.






Using Retail Pro mobile POS to connect with customers on the sales floor

 

 

How does going mobile help you understand your customers?

It frees your sales associates from the cash wrap so they can more meaningfully engage with shoppers on your sales floor and learn about them!

There is no better way to personalize a customer’s experience than by actually getting personal and asking questions. What are they looking for? What’s the occasion? Can we help you find something to go along with the item you’re trying on?

That kind of human connection makes customers feel like they’re shopping with a friend, and it builds emotional attachment to your brand.

Then, when they’re ready, the associate can complete the sale right there on the spot.

 

 

United Colors of Benetton use Retail Pro on tablets in their hip new flagship redesign. The mobile POS reinforce the brand’s ultramodern mood and allows an exclusive payment via mobile and card only, potentially everywhere in the store, reducing the time spent in a queue.

You’ll need to train associates on smoothly transitioning from the personal shopper role to closing the sale and packing their purchase. Positioning bagging stations at key, central points in your store will help keep the efficiency of the traditional queue, without its anti-climactic, assembly line feel.

The best thing about mobile POS is its versatility. Since Retail Pro POS is a browser-based software, you can use it on your choice of Apple, Windows, or Android devices.

And with support for biometric login, Retail Pro helps your employees log in faster and jump back into that assembly line mode for a fast and efficient checkout experience. Plus, the stocking associates can pull out another mobile POS to bust through the line faster.

Thinking about going mobile in your stores? Request a demo and get this whitepaper to see if mobile is right for your enterprise.

 

 






The power of personalizing the post-sale

 

 

Mass-marketed messages are inundating consumers from every available avenue. Retailers today continuously push out these messages using the latest trending channels, hoping to acquire new and repeat customers. With the emergence of more advanced marketing techniques and technologies, outreach has become even more sophisticated.

While a steady diet of messages has allowed consumers to respond and engage with brands in a variety of ways, it has also created a demand for greater personalization.

Stellar personalized experiences provided by some of retail’s top brands (including GNC, Michael Kors, Neiman Marcus, Sephora and Under Armour) have helped to permanently alter consumers’ expectations for brands. A recent Infogroup survey, The Power of Personalization, found that 44% of shoppers are open to switching brands [to ones] that do a better job at personalization.

With so many options to choose from, consumers now look for better, more relevant experiences to keep them engaged. The message is clear: legacy retailers must raise their personalization game or risk losing customers.

A glaring missed opportunity for many retailers is in the re-engagement of their existing customers.

In a recent joint report by Commerce Next and Oracle, 81% of e-commerce marketers cited acquisition marketing as the top priority. The greater focus on new customers may be costing them as current customers are known to pay 67% more than new customers.

Consider the above facts alongside research by Litmus, which states that 64% of consumers consider a retailer’s purchase confirmations as the most valuable messages in their inbox; and research from Experian, which states that transactional emails generate 6x more revenue than standard marketing emails; and an untapped opportunity begins to emerge.

It is for these reasons, well-respected brands including Under Armour and GNC have started tapping into the potential of their post-purchase communications.

 

GNC - A Move towards Customer-Centricity

While the path to personalization can be a winding one for many retailers, GNC continues to remain ahead of the curve.

Having originally adopted smart receipts several years ago, GNC recently looked to flexEngage for new ways to increase the number of GNC brand advocates. Several adjustments were made on the fly to further personalize GNCs smart receipts, and as a result, the brand experienced a 10x lift in membership for their paid loyalty program as well as a 7% increase in sales from product recommendations within receipts.

But the impact continued as 10% of GNC customers receiving smart receipts also enrolled in auto-delivery for products they just purchased.

“This is one of the touchpoints that we use for customer retention and repeat trips. We know that customers access their receipts multiple times for various reasons, so we want to be present for them with multiple tiers of messaging that meet their needs,” says Jennifer Biefel, former Director of Customer Marketing & Loyalty at GNC.

 

 

Under Armour - Creating a Better Customer Experience

Under Armour, a leader in sports and fitness apparel, recently saw the need for improving their post-sale shopping experience.

At the time, shoppers left Under Armour stores with either flat, paper receipts or unengaging PDF receipts which were eventually emailed to customers long after they had left the store. With the goal of keeping customers engaged beyond the sale, Under Armour worked with flexEngage to upgrade their post-sale communications.

Today, Under Armour customers that opt for smart receipts leave their stores with brand-right, dynamic receipts delivered in seconds.

Brent Ott, Senior Manager, Global Store Experience at Under Armour spoke to the effectiveness of the upgrade: “The minute we launched it, we saw the initial challenge that we were trying to resolve was fixed. It was a big win.”

Powerful Results

Under Armour’s brand-right receipts are delivered to their customers' mobile phones in less than 60 seconds. This improvement has also led to some unexpected results.

“The biggest success that we didn’t realize at first was the open rates. The digital marketing team was really excited that the open rates were as high as they were. We are seeing a huge win with our customer feedback surveys. There has been a huge increase in customers’ willingness to tell us about their in-store experiences,” Brent said.

While Under Armour is just getting started in their post-sale personalization journey, smart receipt customers can expect more relevant content from Under Armour as they continue to look for ways to drive brand loyalty and repeat visits.

Under Armour and GNC’s enhancements to their smart receipts showcase the power of post-sale personalization. By harnessing smart receipts, brands are able to capture more attention and revenue from current customers and leverage heightened consumer interest to highlight their other marketing programs.

 

Leveraging Personalized Receipts

Ready to leverage the power of post-sale personalization? flexEngage seamlessly integrates into Retail Pro Prism as well as Retail Pro 9 and above. Getting started is simple. Visit www.flexengage.com or email hello@flexengage.com for more information.

 

 

This guest post brought to you by our friends at flexEngage.






3 CX improvements that drive revenue growth

 

 

For retailers looking to compete with the fast pace and convenience of online businesses, the in-store experience is an increasingly important battleground.

While historically success for retailers may have been measured by metrics such as comparable growth by store, sales per square foot, and gross margin return on investment, these no longer tell the full story.

Modern retailers need to know more than just what your customers are buying.

To succeed today, you need to understand how each of your touch points impacts the totality of your customer experience.

And the trend is one that’s catching – a recent study by the Forrester Group reports, “72% businesses now say improving the customer experience is their No.1 priority.”

 

CX improvements drive increased loyalty & revenue

For today’s retailers, the availability of point-of-sale data provides a huge range of options when it comes to building true and lasting engagement.

Creating customer experiences that are truly memorable can help drive loyalty and advocacy for your business, so it’s important to make every single moment count.

Here are 3 quick examples of how to deliver a ‘customer-centric’ approach that will spur revenue growth.

 

1: Make each experience count

In an increasingly competitive landscape, you need to focus on creating memorable experiences.

This doesn’t need to involve a radical overhaul of everything you do. As we found with one of our retail partners, the little things can add up.

The Retail Prodigy Group (master franchisee holders for Nike) is committed to providing the ‘ultimate customer experience’ with every visit.

In practice, this manifests itself in a series of relatively cost efficient, but rigorously maintained, service measures, especially at the point of sale.

Staff at RPG are trained to ask for each customer’s name and always offer multiple product selections at the checkout.

Customers are made to feel welcome with small personal touches, creating an authentic and warm experience.

This not only creates happy customers but can lead to financial gain too – we measured a 30% increase in average transaction as a result of these measures and a 5% increase in total revenue

 

 

2: Taking a ‘benefits-led’ approach to the sales process

Today’s customers expect high service standards as the norm: in order to drive return visits, you need to be able to certainly meet and ideally exceed these expectations regularly.

While many sales associates are trained to ensure that they know the features of each of their products, it can be even more powerful if your staff is able to speak to the benefits that a product will offer to each of your customers.

A benefits-led sales approach not only demonstrates expertise but also the capacity to listen well.

One retailer found that a sales associate’s ability to convey three or more product benefits led to a 20% increase in average transaction value. 

Treat your customers well, and they’ll reward you in return.

 

 

3: Make sure that you are staffed appropriately

From an operational perspective, it can be a challenge to monitor for consistency of staffing distribution and the timing of staff breaks across a day so that each customer gets what they need every time.

While breakdowns in your scheduling patterns are not always easy to spot, the negative impacts are.

If your customers aren’t getting the help they need, they’ll quickly take their business elsewhere.

By utilizing technology that enables you to track performance standards across the day, you can reduce mangers’ need to be on the floor at all times.

One specialty foods retailer using the TruRating customer feedback solution noticed their product and service scores were dipping in the evenings.

After an inspection of the floor, it became clear that there were issues in stock and staffing.

Through a scheduling reshuffle and an increased focus on product availability in the evening, the store was able to drive a 22% increase in customer satisfaction and a 12% associated increase in spend.

A low-cost fix was suddenly transformed into a revenue opportunity.

 

Point-of-Sale Insights from TruRating and Retail Pro

With simple changes like these, you can optimize toward a more ‘customer-centric’ approach in your business – and tools like Retail Pro POS and customer insights specialist TruRating can help.

Through a simple integration with Retail Pro POS, TruRating enables you to ask customer feedback questions via your payment devices, gathering insights from up to 88% of customers daily, neatly packaged in an intuitive and easy-to-read dashboard.

To learn more or to find out how you can set up your account today, reach out to your Retail Pro Business Partner or contact TruRating directly at 1(855) 285-1685 or Hello@trurating.com.

 

 

Guest post from our friends at:

 






Attract, Explore, Inspire: United Colors of Benetton

 

United Colors of Benetton's London flagship on Oxford Street marks a significant change of pace for the Italian fashion brand.

 

 

The retailer has incorporated informal, hi-tech spaces into the three-storey space, as well as a knitwear theatre which it claims will offer 'an ultimate brand experience that goes beyond the traditional idea of a shop'.

The 1,500 sq m store is located on the east side of Oxford Street, close to the new Tottenham Court Road station on the Elizabeth Line, and part of a rapidly developing area. It will be an outpost for Benetton in the UK, a market where the brand is present with 55 points of sale and where it plans to expand its activity further.

 

 

“As the world of retail is rapidly changing, the design brief specifically tackles how consumer habits are adjusting, while digital shopping is increasing exponentially, and at the same time physical experience is proving a key factor to a successful retail format, that cannot be left out,” says Michele Trevisan, global head of retail design at Benetton. “When we started the project, the brief was not just to do another flagship store; the idea was to create a brand amplifier, a place where the customers can become users of the brand’s philosophy, not just simple consumers. Therefore, we decided to use three drivers for the project: attract, explore and inspire.”

 

 

On the exterior, an arched counter-facade invites passersby to enter and dream. While the 12m-high arches recall classical architecture, the LED screen cladding will showcase interactive content curated by Fabrica, playing with colour textures, images and illustrations.

“The store façade is the main attracting element, not just a simple facade but a strong and impactful communication tool. The façade philosophy is in fact a combination of the classical architectural elements of the arcade together with a digital LED skin in which the content displayed allows interaction with the public,” explains Trevisan.

 

 

Once inside, shoppers are encouraged to explore the space around them. The store has been designed entirely by Benetton's retail design department and furnished with natural materials such as wood, iron and stone.

“The store layout and the product displays have been designed to simplify the circulation and the product exploration, while the interaction between sales associates and customer is facilitated thanks to a new mobile payment system and the presence of innovative express check out desks which allow a more friendly and queue-free service,” says Trevisan.

 

 

United Colors of Benetton is an Italian company with more than 50 years of history, and this was the real starting point of the project.

“We are proud of being an Italian brand in an international fashion world. That’s why we developed the interior design mood using a selection of warm, elegant and honest materials with Italian taste. The flooring features terrazzo Veneziano for most of the floor area, an essence of ash tree wood furnishes all the furniture in combination with natural iron elements, while the ceiling is composed of a mix of high gloss surfaces, metal mesh and an interpretation of a classical Italian cassettoni wood ceiling. In specific areas, greenery is added to complete the natural environment via the presence of live trees and plants. Colours and finishes are inspired by the Mediterranean environment,” adds Trevisan.

Staff are on hand in the knitwear theatre to present Benetton's vast knitwear collections. In the lounge area, customers can relax while reading books and design magazines. In addition, a series of touchscreen tables allow visitors to interact with the entire collection as well as with the brand's most significant contents.

 

 

Customers will be able to move fluidly across the three levels – dedicated to men's, women's and children's collections – thanks to a 'loop' staircase that extends like a ribbon across the shop floors and leads to a series of scattered stations that replace traditional checkouts.

 

 

Technology is also key to the customer experience. Inside the store, two digital applications were created with the intention to simplify the customer’s activity reducing the waste of time. The first one is the mobile payment system that, thanks to the use of Retail Pro POS on WiFi tablets, allows an exclusive payment via mobile and card only, potentially everywhere in the store, reducing the time spent in a queue.

 

 

The second one is represented by three digital interactive tables showcasing content on selected products, on the Benetton brand initiatives and, thanks to the use of an integrated RFID antenna, they release technical information about the products that are placed on the tabletop.

The new Oxford Street flagship is Benetton’s 16th UK store.

 

United Colors of Benetton leverages Retail Pro POS on mobile tablets for a modern, focused customer experience. Get this whitepaper to see if mobile POS is right for your brand.

 

 

Guest post from our friends at Retail Focus. Read the original story in Retail Focus April 2018.






Ecommerce Immersion: Retail Pro International and VTEX committed to grow the market in Fashion & Sports

 

 

Recently Retail Pro International participated in a specialized event in Mexico for the Fashíon & Sports industries.

The goal was to infuse the market with insights on digital transformation processes accelerating companies around the world.

 

 

Speakers included top brands like Under Armour, Grupo Martí, Aldo Conti.

Technology experts Grupo Ambit and Retail Pro International also shared their experiences on marketing trends, omnichannel strategies, customer experience and best practices for better performance in ecommerce.

Learn about unifying commerce with Retail Pro

 

 

Retail Pro International CEO, Kerry Lemos, offered his vision on better customer experiences through unified commerce, emphasizing that retailers need to go beyond the omnichannel goal, expanding their tactics to maximize ROI with better data-driven store management.

The audience from different industries took notes from Lemos, who gave insights on improving operations and acting on shoppers' demands to respond quickly to industry change and increase profitability.

 

 

Under Armour shared their insights on improving brand performance and creating seamless shopping experiences across ecommerce sites and marketplaces.

The Aldo Conti brand shared its tactics and experiences during the "HotSale" period, a season akin to Cyber Monday, where thousands of companies in Mexico create huge discounts exclusively in ecommerce.

 

 

Grupo Martí, the leading retailer of sporting gear in Mexico, shared the story of how they began the journey toward digital transformation and its importance for the CEO’s strategic plans.

The sports retailer talked about breaking out of cloistered mind-sets and reallocating investments for future digital efforts.

Undoubtedly, events like this, hosted out by VTEX, are creating an increasingly powerful retail community that is changing the landscape toward unifying commerce in Mexico.

 






The Personal Data Paradox [eBook]

 

 

Today’s headlines are ablaze with privacy scandals and consumer demand for transparency in data collection.

From Facebook to Amazon, we aim to bring down giants for perceived intrusions on our autonomy.

These are powerful political concepts that dominate the conversation around today’s technological advancements and our desire to apply morality to the digital world.

Equally as powerful as these headlines are the paradoxical returns and conversion rates that retailers are experiencing from data driven personalized marketing content: content that is derived from data collection unique to individual shoppers, i.e. personal preferences and tastes.

Public opinion seems to contradict consumer expectation.

Get this eBook to see consumers' perception of privacy, their expectation of personalization, and the middle ground we are all looking for.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Get the eBook

 

 

 






Want loyal customers? Gartner says: Improve their experience.

 

A recent report from Gartner found that a large majority — 81% — of customer experience (CX) leaders predict they will compete mostly or entirely on CX.

However, less than half of those responding have established the rationale for why CX drives business outcomes.

In addition, although companies believe they are improving CX, it's unclear whether they are actually doing so.

By their own metrics, 48% of respondents said their CX efforts exceed management’s expectations, but only just 22% reported those efforts exceeded customers’ expectations, according to the Gartner report.

Retailers' CX strategies are clearly falling short, but improvements can be made. Here are some suggestions from the Gartner study.

 

1: Assess capabilities

Retailers should take a deep dive and determine whether the data they capture provides a clear picture of customer wants, needs and expectations, rather than their perceptions of existing initiatives.

Once the customer data is gathered, touch points identified, and measurement systems implemented, consider demographics.

Millennial customers, for example, enjoy complicating CX matters.

Research shows that millennials don't take loyalty programs as seriously as older customers, because they bristle at the idea that a brand would take their business for granted.

While they may be regular customers at a particular retailer for a while, millennials need fresh, compelling reasons to be loyal.

 

2: Tailor customer journey maps

Provide relevant experiences at key touch points to drive customers deeper into the buy, own and advocate journey.

Brands hoping to secure loyalty need to start by putting themselves in their customers' shoes: How can a brand show loyalty to its best customers?

Understanding guests and customers across all channels and touch points is critical, no matter where they are on the customer journey.

 

3: Measure more innovative CX efforts differently

CX leaders must make sure to measure their more innovative customer experiences against adoption, perception and financial objectives.

Customer experience must evolve, but it must do so bearing in mind the successes of the past.

Understanding the differences between customer segments is critical.
If customers are primarily millennials, engage in a way that aims to satisfy their desire for recognition and status.

Provide them with a platform for standing out as trendsetters.

But if baby boomers are a majority of clientele, understand they prefer high touch over high tech: Service with a smile is paramount for those customers.

Gartner boils it down to this: understanding customer experience is paramount to success, one size does not fit all, and it's the customer's perception that matters most.

No matter how successful a retailer thinks it is in providing top notch service, the customer's opinion is still always right.






3 Ways to win back your ex-customer

 

One school of thought among customer service managers today is that it doesn't pay to wow your customer.

Instead, it is more desirable — and more cost effective — to "meet expectations."

Regardless of whether you agree or disagree with that strategy for retaining customers, it is not a solution for winning back customers.

Why would you want to win back customers?

So you don't have to start from scratch.

The cost of attaining new customers is far greater than retaining them.

"Lost customers" may have replaced your company — but they were once regulars, and did at one point have fond memories of your business.

You need to rekindle the flame, and often, it's not that different.

It's definitely less expensive than cultivating a customer.

Clearly, the optimal state is to always operate in a way that naturally retains customers, so your business isn't faced with losing customers.

Such a retailer would have a solid loyalty program, innovative programming, special events and a personalized approach overall.

But miscommunication happens and mistakes are made. All is not necessarily lost, but you must be authentic in your approach.

Here are 3 ways to win the customer back.

 

1: Apologize sincerely

Saying, "I'm sorry" is anathema to some retailers.

However, some situations simply do require a direct apology: Shipments that routinely missed delivery dates, a chronic shortage of salespeople, unreasonable check out lines, for instance.

Those circumstances can and should be addressed at the moment of impact.

Some of those can slip under the radar and aren't noticed until they've created a pattern.

If a specific problem has come to your attention that has caused a significant drop in regular shoppers, you can address the situation with a positive promise in a customer communication after the fact: "We're happy to let you know about our new personal shopper program," or "We have increased our associate staffing to get you in and out of our store faster."

 

2: A coupon helps

Discounts and coupons are a common customer retention tactic, but can also work for those who have drifted off.

The best way to regain these customers and begin to build loyalty is by saving them money.

Note, you're not rebuilding loyalty, because chances are, you never had it.

You'll have to start over with the disadvantage of having to make up for a negative past.

Own up to what went wrong and offer a gesture in compensation.

 

3: Find out why they left

Data analysis can help.

Look at your customer data and evaluate past purchases.

Determine what the sweet spot is for this customer.

And, importantly, see if you can note a trend that would allow you to predict what other customers might also follow suit, so you can form an intervention plan.

If you can have a dialogue with those customers — in person, via email or chat session — try to learn what would make them return.

Not every customer is a keeper.

For example, the customer who is a bully with employees or the customer who abused return policies are not worth the time and effort to keep them.

But most customers are worth retaining, because they fit your target customer persona, spend regularly and some are vocally loyal.

Marketing Metrics says you have a 20-40% chance of winning back an ex-customer.

Simply meeting their minimum expectations means they might return another day.

Exceeding expectations means you won't have to chase after them when a "better deal"— whether for price or service — comes along.






3 qualities of authentic retail shoppers value most

 

 

Authentic.

It's a term that retailers are using increasingly to describe how they aim to be and communicate with customers.

It's also a word that customers use to describe their ideal retailer.

Shoppers' expectations have changed. It's no longer enough to just sell quality products to your core customers; the retail personality is important and extends to how shoppers relate to and interact with brands.

But what makes a brand authentic in shoppers’ minds?

 

1: Honest communication

An "authentic brand" refers to one using less marketing-speak and more honesty.

Today's customers are less impressed with fancy slogans than with accurate, interesting, and socially aware mission statements.

They want product features detailed in plain English with no "fluff." They view traditional advertising with skepticism and, often, disdain.

Millennials in particular don't want to be "sold to." Authentic retailers have integrity and demonstrate honesty as well as a certain level of transparency.

Customers are interested in learning what a brand stands for, what causes it supports and how its offerings help achieve its stated goals.

 

2: Quality & fairness

"Brandless" is a retailer that believes in "Life, liberty and the pursuit of fairly priced everything."

It appeals to customers who are price conscious but who are also interested in value.

Products are high quality, featuring low prices and no brand names.

Brandless is targeted to the savvy, budget minded shopper who wants quality but not necessarily a brand.

Brandless does not have to contend with adding markups for distribution, in-store advertising and shelf stocking.

It also provides organic, non-toxic, hypoallergenic products that aren't tested on animals. Those globe-conscious characteristics resonate with their customers.

 

3: Standing for more than just the bottom line

Now more than ever people want to know the history of retailers, what their mission is and how they conduct business.

To a degree, customers view retailers and brands as an extension of their own beliefs. Retailers are expected to have values that reflect their customers'.

For example, family-oriented shoppers may not shop on Thanksgiving, because they believe sales associates should be able to spend the day with their families. They might then shop on Black Friday at retailers who were closed the day before, thereby rewarding the stores that align with their value systems.

They want to do business with an "authentic" brand, one which has a core business strategy that evokes the virtues they themselves consider important.

A retailer must walk the walk as well as talk the talk, or customers will find one who does.






130

Countries

9000

Customers

54000

Stores

159000

Points of Sale

130

Countries

9000

Customers

54000

Stores

159000

Points of Sale

130

Countries

9000

Customers

54000

Stores

159000

Points of Sale