Retail is a cut-throat space. Running a retail business, especially today in this digital world is no easy task. As a retailer, you must battle with a variety of challenges including the intense competition in the market and growing threats from the e-commerce industry. To keep thriving in a highly competitive industry, retailers need to focus on improving overall business operations to provide a unique customer experience, and only adopting advanced technologies in your business can provide you an edge over your competitors while helping you survive and grow your business. Among many such technologies with the potential to benefit the retail sector, cloud computing in the retail industry is one of the valuable technologies that the industry could leverage. According to a report by MarketsandMarkets, the global retail cloud market is forecast to reach $20490 million in 2028. Here are some of the few ways in which cloud computing is revolutionizing the retail industry.
Read our article on: Digital Transformation in the Retail Industry
Even today, many offline retailers depend on outdated legacy systems that only allow them to operate in a disjoint and unorganized manner. This prevents them from efficiently integrating varied business operations such as inventory, shipping, development, and POS (Point of Sale). These several components must work together to make the whole process more efficient. This is why retailers need to move to cloud computing. Cloud computing in the retail industry is capable of streamlining operations across all departments. Moreover, it also enables interconnected point of sale (POS) systems as POS systems are moving from cash and cards to smartphones and tablets. Cloud POS systems are becoming a necessity for retailers due to the several benefits they offer such as centralization of the customer, sales, and inventory information on central cloud storage.
Artificial intelligence and Machine Learning in the retail industry
Efficient inventory management
Efficient inventory management is one of the most common challenges faced in the retail industry. From small retailers to big retail companies that manage multiple stores at different locations, checking and managing their stocks in real-time is a difficult task that is often prone to human errors. But with the help of cloud computing, retailers can have wide visibility of their stocks in real-time. No matter where you are or your employees are, cloud systems allow you to access inventory information at any given time and thus help you make decisions accordingly. It also builds predictive inventory forecasting that helps you avoid issues such as stocks shortage.
Impact of Big Data Analytics in the retail industry
Higher supply chain visibility
Managing the supply chain has always been a tedious task for retailers. A slip in any one of the processes can lead to irreparable damage and possibly a huge loss of money. This is where cloud computing comes into play. Retails have an edge with cloud computing when it comes to the aspect of visibility. With the help of cloud computing in the retail industry, retailers can have enterprise-wide supply chain visibility. It enables them to have supply chain systems capable of adequately handling their business with improved visibility and efficiency. This way they can plan their retail chains without expedited deliveries, stock-outs, and unorganized inventories. Cloud computing technology also enables the retails to be updated with the real-time status of consignments, digitized documents from suppliers, carriers, logistics providers, etc.
Improved customer experience
The retail industry is one of the industries that collect a tremendous amount of customer data and sales data. However, these data collected by retailers are not being utilized fully. Cloud computing in the retail industry enables retailers with high-power computing resources and statistical models to analyze the data. Based on this analysis, they can also develop their marketing, pricing, or merchandising strategies to attract more customers. It also allows the retailers to offer personalized recommendations, special membership offers coupon codes, etc that add to the loyalty factor.
The retail industry is seeing the huge potential of cloud technology and most of them are actually using it to their advantage. With more and more retailers realizing the impact of cloud computing in the retail industry, it will be inevitable that retail will adopt cloud computing once they evolve competent solutions. We, at Intone, provide clients with the right expertise, tools, and processes that ensure a successful transition to plan, build and manage the cloud infrastructure specific to their business needs. To manage your infrastructure platform, we embrace the future of enterprise computing platforms which is enabled using software-driven applications that are powered by Al, ML & ChatOps. Intone’s Stack Aero provides a full-stack platform to model, deploy, run and manage applications running in the private or public cloud, with common taxonomy and standards that can help adopt any computer platform and operate consistently across any environment powered by API, Mobile, and ChatOps.