If you’re a middle market retailer, you’re probably facing a lot of challenges in the coming year. The most talked about challenge this year is labor. Because of low unemployment, finding good employees and lowering turnover rates is harder to do, especially if you’re retail management systems are outdated. Through better technology, retailers throughout the United States can invest in their employees—an opportunity to make your business more competitive during a lean market.
Two problems, ineffective inventory management and the failure to adapt to changing markets, can lead to major business disruptions. Much of this comes from outdated or obsolete point of sale and inventory management systems. Older systems can’t provide you with the data you need to be nimble and keep your employees productive.
The employees you do have need to be able to do more. It’s an opportunity for you to explore what retail management software can do to make them more productive. Anyone using outdated or unsupported software leaves themselves open to frequent business disruptions and serious limitations for growth. Plus, these leave you open to unnecessary risks:
- Data security,
- 3rd Party security,
- Total software failure,
What really hurts worker productivity is the last one on the list. Employees will often find workarounds for the software’s in ability to function with hardware or other types of software. This takes more time and leaves room for error.
Employee training is an area of opportunity. Employees are often trained on several different types of software and hardware, which increases the amount of time it takes to learn the system. Trying to find inventory or answers to customers’ questions is more difficult. They are unable to do their job. Those are good enough reasons to invest in a better system in order to address any concerns you may have with product flow.
What Do Consumers Think?
Consumers know that competition is tight and they use it to their advantage. This means having the right inventory that is always available. If not, they are sure that they can find it elsewhere. You’ll also need to know exactly what they are looking for.
Good sales analytics need great data. Large scale inventory management has to be able to drill down to find the metrics you want, especially when forecasting your sales. Good metrics let you know what your customers are looking for and when they want it.
Your customers want the best experience possible, and sticking with outdated technology can damage your reputation. More than 90% of consumers will stay away from businesses that they know has an outdated point of sale. They believe that it will lead to more headaches during the checkout process or returns. Small improvements to the customer’s experience offer the biggest opportunity for retailers. Many of those improvements can be gained from the best in point of sale software.
When You’re Looking to Grow
For middle market retailers looking to expand, they need to have an integrated retail management system in place. They can lose out on 10% to 25% of their profits without one. That’s how much productivity and product availability can affect their bottom line.
This is especially true when opening multiple locations. Anything that wasn’t automated or needed a workaround becomes a really big problem. Finding the right system for your business is an opportunity to stay competitive and grow.