The ever changing retail environment means that retailers need to be ready for the next wave of customer trends in order to survive and thrive in the industry. Those who focus on improving retail operations efficiency and providing top notch customer service will be among the businesses who will readily be able to compete against their rivals.
Retail operations encompasses the daily activities and functions of a retail business. These include inventory management, order fulfillment, sales, and the layout of stores. All of these activities contribute to the customer shopping experience.
No matter the size of the retailers, there needs to be systems in place in order for their operations to run smoothly and effectively. What aspect of their system to keep in mind, and what strategy to apply depends on the retailers themselves, however the overall goal is to be able to stay competitive in the retail environment.
To achieve operational excellence in the retail industry, there are four aspects to keep in mind:
The main idea of consistent customer experience is that you are able to meet your customers’ needs in an efficient and timely manner, ensuring a pleasant experience whenever they interact with your brand, be it digital or in-store.
When you take a look at customer service for brick and mortar locations, consistency is key. You want to make sure that you do not have any underperforming outlets.
Having visibility into a company’s problem occurrence rate, and being able to drill down and identify issues per outlet can provide great insights to management and help them make informed decisions, and look into accountability and compliance in SOPs Hygiene, store quality and safety standards.
An increase in sales is also driven by the execution of activities in different store locations. They need to be flawless, and inconsistencies in rolling out campaigns and promotions can be detrimental to revenue. Any new campaigns and promotions should be informed to the frontliners in a consistent manner and be communicated clearly. Guidelines for the campaigns should be specific down to the duration of campaign, and the visual display in store. Staff should be able to refer to these guidelines at any moment, in order to properly adhere to them.
You need to have a system that can keep track of inventory to avoid problems such as shrinkage, especially when dealing with time or temperature-sensitive stock with a short shelf life (food items or ingredients).
Retail operational efficiency is a state that all businesses would like to continually improve. Efficiency can be achieved through cost-effective decisions in activities such as brand promotion, sales, customer experience and satisfaction, where the desired outputs outweigh the inputs necessary to reach that state.
The contribution of frontliners to retail operations and retail excellence cannot be overstated. They are the first point of contact between the consumers and your business, and enabling them and helping them to succeed at their job leads to overall success for the company.
Enabled frontliners are more autonomous when provided with on-the-job assets such as visual references and automated reminders are readily available. This not only makes their job easier, but improves the happiness and job satisfaction of your staff as they are more engaged and productive.
Rise above your competition and achieve operational excellence through transforming your business operations. Nimbly Technologies provides an all-in-one digital solution for your retail operations by enabling your frontline workforce, ensuring efficient and cost saving operations, leading to an uplift in revenue and consistent customer satisfaction and experience. Learn more about our features such as our analytics dashboard and issue tracker, and see how it could help your business achieve operational excellence.