The amount of data people are creating these days is mind-boggling. And it’s not simple box-checking these days — we’re sharing pictures, uploading videos, downloading music and posting on social media websites.
Consider this: 90 percent of the world’s data was created in the past two years alone, according to an article at the National Retail Federation’s blog.
Retailers today must make sense of this massive amount of “unstructured” data floating around to make smarter business decisions and enhance the shopping experience for customers.
Think about all of the SKUs rung up each day multiplied by the number of stores in a retail chain. You’re looking at hundreds of millions of decisions on restocking. It’s impossible for a person to make all of those decisions.
But there’s a fine line between the romance and science of retail. Areas like trendy colors or the next hot style are the romance, while questions like “How much do I buy?” and “At what price do I sell?” represent the science.
Where technology can be helpful is by taking all of that data and turning it into meaningful information so that executives can make business decisions in a timely fashion.
Using this technology can ensure that the right metrics are in front of executives. Companies need to invest in technology that gives them timely and meaningful information.
Customers are willing to share personal information if retailers deliver a more personalized shopping experience. It’s up to retailers to deliver what customers are asking for.
Source: National Retail Federation, January 2012