We are living in the era of big data, and some sectors have been quicker than others to catch on to the potential of business information which can be harvested for the benefit of sales and marketing strategies. One of the 'early adopters' has been the retail industry, which has been busy exploiting the opportunities presented by real-time data.

We are living in the era of big data, and some sectors have been quicker than others to catch on to the potential of business information which can be harvested for the benefit of sales and marketing strategies. One of the ‘early adopters’ has been the retail industry, which has been busy exploiting the opportunities presented by real-time data.

Streamline your offering

In retail, we might say that the customer is king, the ability to gather and harvest retail time data from connected objects can offer a number of insights. As part of the Internet of Things (IoT) structure which makes up a network of connected objects around retail spaces, point of sale (PoS) systems can play a crucial role in collecting information which can help retailers make the right decisions – at both back and front of house. That means price adjustments in real time, based on product popularity, and tightened stock controls which mean that the most in demand items are always available.

The road that never ends

Once you know what, when and how your customers are buying, the door opens up to a number of other opportunities based on the data which you can now collate. You will be able to create predictive models which go deeper into customer behaviour and ally with your customer personas. Think predictions related to what customers are likely to buy, which can also link into the targeting of your marketing campaigns and how you direct them through social media channels. It all adds up to a way of increasing your potential customer base and making a difference to the bottom line.

Enhanced stock management

It isn’t only on the shop floor and through marketing channels that retailers can benefit from the data which they are now able to gather. Inventory management can be revolutionised thanks to the greater visibility of supply and demand which data gathering techniques offer. This information can be used to ensure that the logistics behind stock supply are streamlined as much as possible, taking advantage of cost savings.

Optimised pricing

One of the ways in which online retail has been able to ‘get one over’ on traditional high street retailers is its ability to automate sensitive pricing which is based on the real time buying habits of customers. This is now not just restricted to the online retail world, as thanks to retail time data, pricing can be changed several times a day if needs be. This keeps retailers super competitive in the eyes of customers, who are now able to compare prices more easily than ever before.

Achieve a deeper understanding

Once you can pinpoint how your customers are buying products, you can begin to align this information with the other data which you hold – such as the demographics of your customer base. This can help you to individualise your marketing shots, based on the purchasing patterns which you have added to each customer profile.

MPOS is the answer

Mobile PoS systems are right at the forefront of big data in retail, providing streams of information in real time which can go towards making continuous customer insights. ECR’s MPoS all in one terminals offer excellent 3G-4G coverage which means that retailers never stop collecting information. Even if connections go down, data is pushed as soon as the terminals are back online.