The retail industry is no exception as automation continues infiltrating and disrupting various industries, especially since eCommerce saw such a boost during the COVID-19 outbreak. Retail automation is a well-known fact for speeding up the execution and completion of jobs. On the other hand, it has several advantages that touch practically every part of your organization.
What is Retail Automation?
Automation is the concept and practice of employing computers and technology to create systems, processes, and workflows that can operate independently and with little or no human intervention.
Automation executes jobs and predicts future scenarios using technology such as machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI). Depending on who you ask, retail automation might imply a variety of things. It might be about:
- Inventory management, accounting and bookkeeping, analytics reporting, buying, and other comparable and repetitive chores are examples of manual retail processes that may be automated.
- Automatic purchases, subscriptions, repeating payments, and other related notions are all examples of automated commerce.
- Technology allows you to set and forget email sequences, retargeting campaigns, and other marketing methods to promote your brand continuously without the need for regular maintenance.
What would Businesses get when using retail automation?
Reduce labor cost
Previously, the concept of automation drew up images of sophisticated robots capable of replacing human employees. While that is an intriguing concept to consider, the reality of automation is quite different. Technology advancements have increased the number of procedures that can be automated. Automation is becoming more popular among business owners to save labor expenses. Many business owners who are seeking a solution to save expenses while serving more clients and increasing earnings may find automation a feasible choice.
The most significant cost reductions from retail automation will come from reduced staff hours. Consider the differences between manufacturing processes in the past and modern-day production. Processes that used to need a whole assembly line of humans are now frequently automated, allowing them to be completed more rapidly and at a lower cost. Although you may not be able to entirely automate your business’s fundamental functions, selecting a few areas for automation might help you avoid the need for more personnel in the future. One specific example came from Target’s $7 billion commitment in 2017. This company is automating more of its shops in order to give staff more time on the sales floor.
A Target representative revealed that the mass retailer expects to install 500 automatic cash-counting devices to shops by August and then roll them out to the remainder of its store network by the end of the year.
Better inventory management
Many digital transformation firms provide a range of automated inventory management solutions to improve business scalability, eliminate human error, save time, and, as a consequence, achieve cost-effective corporate operations.
Amazon earns more than one-fifth of its North America retail revenue because local stores lacked enough data to forecast accurately. So to say, updating information between stores is essential. And ConnectPOS is one perfect solution for this issue since it saves time and money to auto-sync data between sales touchpoints. Managing multi-store and multi-warehouse would not be a problem for its endless retail automation possibilities.
Improve customer experience
The customer experience (CX) you deliver is the one major distinction that may set your company apart from the competition. This statistic has now become a focal point for many organizations trying to expand. According to a recent Gartner poll, 66% of marketers believe that customer experience is the battleground of the future.
Fortunately, intelligent automation can help improve CX by assisting businesses in attracting new consumers and retaining existing ones.
Improving the response time and quality
The speed with which concerns are fixed is one factor that has an influence on CX. Customers may now express their displeasure through social media and other places, and one area that is frequently discussed is the service offered to consumers.
Many organizations struggle with the speed with which they respond to customers when it comes to customer care. While increasing resources to assist can help in the short term, it is not a long-term solution to success. However, using retail automation, certain solutions that will make a major contribution can be implemented.
Self-service and Chatbots
One area where IA may be quite beneficial is with chatbots. Chatbots may reply to consumer inquiries 24 hours a day, seven days a week, reducing the time it takes for customers to obtain a response. Chatbots powered by artificial intelligence can also aid in problem-solving. According to the MIT Technology Review, AI-powered chatbots have helped 90% of organizations improve complaint response.
Chatbots, when combined with self-service resources such as knowledge bases, are extremely effective in assisting clients with problems. Chatbots may often assist a firm to divert 30% to 50% of its workload. It allows agents to focus on more difficult and crucial requests.
Safeguard your business by retail automation
Fraud is still a major threat for retailers. According to the State of Retail Payments, the biggest payment-related difficulty encountered by merchants is fraud, mentioned by 55% of those polled. According to a Federal Reserve report, online fraud increased from $3.4 billion in 2015 to $4.6 billion in 2016. The first year shops were compelled to accept chip cards or risk increased fraud liability.
Therefore, retail automation may protect your organization by proactively identifying fraud. One survey indicated that machine-learning analytics is extremely high on the priority list for fraud mitigation efforts for 70% of respondents.
For example, according to the FireMon 2018 State of the Firewall Report, tasks in the change-management process (planning, risk assessment, compliance testing) can be automated. This change improves workflows for these security professionals.
For orders deemed high-risk, you may teach your program to provide you with an alarm or request additional identification verification. You may create high-risk orders depending on a variety of factors, including order value, browser location, and shipment area.
Retail automation of basic, rule-based operations while collecting data on performance and behavior is a significant instrument for company success. If you want to know more about this aspect, call us to get more information and solution for your business.