The Case for Improved In-Store Labor Standards

The ever-dynamic retail industry is still not there when it comes to a structured set of operational standards in store. One such key concern area for retailers is related to labor standards and labor hour models where retailers are seeking standardization of processes. EKN data has shown how labor standard implementations have resulted in increased customer satisfaction and customer engagement rate, besides driving several operational efficiencies in the stores. This EKN point of view discusses how customer satisfaction, operational efficiencies and labor productivity can be addressed by properly implementing labor standards, task management and work measurement models. Download Full...

Transforming Retail With In-Store Customer Engagement Analytics

Retailers can no longer be left in the dark about consumer shopping habits in the store. In an increasingly omnichannel world, just as in the case of digital shoppers, retailers need to be aware of what customers do inside of their stores’ four walls before, during and after the shopping experience. The most successful retailers will be the ones that have intimate relationships with their customers, especially those that are typically harder to track in-store throughout the purchase cycle. As a result, retailers are learning to correlate point-of-sale (POS) results with other forms of in-store analytics such as Wi-Fi, a move that can optimize store layouts, improve in-store customer engagement, labor allocation and promotional effectiveness — factors that can then help companies improve number of customer visits, employee-customer interactions, assortment and sales. The infographic below explains how to transform the store with in-store customer engagement analytics so as to meet the desired objectives. To read more about the topic, follow the point of view report...

How to Re-Activate Current Loyalty Programs to Bring Alive Loyalty

In this age of well-informed, technology-savvy, connected consumer, is customer loyalty dead? An EKN survey (EKN 2014 Next Generation Shopper Experience: A Millennial Consumer Perspective) shows that the customers, especially the millennials, are willing to spend additionally upto 30% over the same period in case they get a great shopping experience. EKN’s analysis shows that the same customers sometimes defect their loyal brand in search of better prices and convenience. Retention had never been so difficult. So how exactly then a retailer claims to retain a loyal customer base when the customer’s behavior suggests otherwise. One needs to figure out the good that the existing retail loyalty programs are doing for the business except for providing a momentarily transaction-based attraction for customers. It is interesting to find that many retailers run these contests amongst their employees in store in return of incentives, to get the maximum no. of registrations for their loyalty program. Does the buck stop here? No, we believe, it is equally critical for retailers to ensure the subscribed customers make use of the program consistently and this can only happen when customers realize the associated far-reaching rewards than mere transactional benefits. This notion ties back to the concept of customer lifecycle value, one of those metrics which has seen most retailers struggling with. Measuring customer’s lifecycle value considers into account a more holistic view of the value derived from the customers over the period and thus challenges the retailers’ myopic view in executing a transactional loyalty program. The concern mentioned above is applicable to most retailers irrespective of their format, segment and size. Key issues that...

Retail’s New Digital Transformation Strategies

Undoubtedly, digital transformation means different things to different retailers. However, a common link for all retailers is embedded in a strong and robust digital movement that leans on transformational and consumer innovation-rich retail programs and approaches. It is abundantly clear that much of retail industry’s growth is fraught with challenges associated with unforeseen market uncertainties, legacy systems, lack of skilled resources, delayed or insufficient insights and tight budgets. However, retailers can create integrated and personalized digital content and commerce inside and outside the four walls by marrying together pragmatic retailer-consumer digital buying journey workflows and related business user and consumer-facing change management best practices. This is a required building block for enabling a seamless and up-to-date digital commerce experience. It can be argued that a highly sophisticated digital transformation approach, related asset or solution is not as important in the store, DC or supply chain as is the operational pragmatism, business connectivity and day-to-day adoption or usage associated with such a transformation, asset or solution. For instance, it is clear that 7 in 10 retailers use an eCommerce platform that requires some form of re-investment to be aligned with evolving consumer/market trends. Additionally, at least half of retailers plan to develop a unified commerce platform in the store so challenges associated with an ageing store POS environment can be overcome. However, a dedicated strategy to manage and grow relevant content, digital assets and overall user experience in an integrated and user-relevant manner is the missing link that negatively impacts flow of business, traffic and retail experience every day. At a time when the average consumer is using more than...

Building a New Digital Foundation for Retail and QSR with Wi-Fi

Delivering on a unique, consistent, and ‘frictionless’ customer experience has been the mantra for the retail and restaurant business for years. A huge element in achieving this goal is having the knowledge and understanding of the customer’s behaviors across the buying journey. Leveraging Wi-Fi as an engagement model can help improve customer service wait time, provide communication via direct messaging with customers, enhance associate productivity and sales. This Point of View illustrates the current challenges & key benefits retailers and QSRs are experiencing in the adoption of store or location Wi-Fi. Download Full...