How the pandemic has forced the retail sector to become entrenched in digital adoption


When we look at 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has led to an inevitable increase in leverage digital technologies due to social distancing norms and nationwide shutdowns. Since then, people and organizations around the world have had to adapt to new ways of working and living.

The coronavirus outbreak has also led to a digital adoption expedition. Due to digitalization, the transition to working from home (WFH) has caused a rapid revolution in companies in all sectors, and the detail sector is no exception. New age technologies are becoming increasingly important, requiring design and regulatory study.

However, technology is changing the way every small, medium and large company in the retail industry does business by helping to increase efficiency, save money and provide better products and services. Retail businesses that were still hesitant to adopt digital solutions have now realized all the benefits that digital can bring and are looking to accelerate their benefits.

Digital adoption in the retail industry

Fast forward to today, technological advancements in the retail industry have ushered in a whole new era of possibilities by bringing the online and offline worlds ever closer together.

AI/ML – The retail industry is leading the way to better business outcomes through digital transformation. In this journey, artificial intelligence is reshaping the retail industry, from computer vision to real-time consumer engagement. As a result, merchants are eager to use AI to better engage with their consumers, improve their processes, and increase their efficiency.

More than ever, the retail industry understands the value of digital technologies, especially the role of artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML) and the Internet of Things (IoT) in resolving long-standing issues such as supply chain disruptions. , unexpected contactless distribution requests and reduced expenses.

Retailers can benefit from these technologies, which include predictive supply and demand visibility, dynamic pricing, counterfeit detection, customer hyper-segmentation, and the ability to respond to real-time demand signals. . If we summarize the facts and figures, the retail sector is also facing long-standing challenges and AI should be a feasible solution.

IoT – The Internet of Things (IoT) is a network of billions of physical objects that communicate and share data. The Internet of Things (IoT) holds enormous potential for the retail industry, offering a method to create even more engaging and inventive shopping experiences – this was highlighted by Statista in its recent report, which indicates that the IoT market will generate $951.50 million in sales. by the end of 2022. Market revenue is expected to grow at an annual rate of 9.71% (2022-2027 CAGR), resulting in a market volume of $1,512.00 million by 2027.

Therefore, it would be appropriate to say that the IoT is already being put to good use in a variety of industries, including the retail sector, which uses the technology to its advantage.

AR/VR – Virtual reality devices are becoming increasingly popular. According to a joint study by Snap and Deloitte, by 2025 approximately 75% of the world’s population and virtually all social app users will be frequent users of augmented reality. That’s why retailers are using virtual and augmented reality to enhance the consumer experience in various ways. The reality extension is already used by many stores today for everything from browsing items to digitally “porting” them. Thus, this trend will accelerate in the coming times.

In the future, however, AR and VR technologies will allow customers to try out new products from the comfort of their own homes, enhancing the customer experience and taking it to the next level.

READ MORE: How Augmented Reality, VR and the Metaverse are helping the retail industry transform

Block chain – Despite the fact that many retailers offer seamless shopping, their physical storefronts generate the majority of their revenue. However, post-pandemic, merchants faced several challenges, including managing the supply chain, selling items, establishing stores, and keeping all customers and staff safe.

All of this could have been avoided if the industry had used blockchain technology from the start. In fact, blockchain’s reliability, durability, and quality tracking and management process support can provide the ultimate digitalization that retail businesses desire.

The web development platform – The transition from offline to online stores in the retail industry has seen a paradigm shift over the years. Factors such as changing consumer behavior, proliferating channels, declining revenue rates, and tech-savvy consumers have made it impossible for stores to live without technology.

With interactive retail web development, businesses provide consumers with ease of shopping as well as convenience. However, retail website development solutions deliver operational excellence across all geographies and deliver exceptional customer-centric insights.

Benefits of digital adoption

Customer Experience Transformation – Customer experiences are influenced and enhanced through digital transformation. Employee productivity is increased and services are improved more efficiently through the use of technical solutions. This not only ensures that customers receive high quality services, but also that they have a pleasant shopping experience. While digital transformation is customer driven, it also helps the business improve and stay ahead of the competition.

Improved marketing – Digital transformation in retail is changing the way businesses communicate with their customers in the most efficient way possible to target particular customer profiles, as well as increase customer-side contact with the business. However, it benefits the product, the service and the organization.

In-depth data collection and analysis for actionable insights – In retail, big data plays an important role. Big Data forecasts demand, optimizes pricing and business operations, and personalizes your offering to stay ahead of the consumer. Meet requirements and provide insights into customer behavior and predict trends.

Ability to reach new customer segments that were previously away from physical stores – Thanks to digital platforms and marketing solutions, retailers who operated with traditional stores can not only bring their businesses online, but also reach customers who previously could not visit them in person. Online stores allow retailers large and small to truly go global, bring their products to people who didn’t know anything about them before, and earn unprecedented returns.

The bottom line!

The pandemic has increased the number of people shopping online. The majority of customers chose online shopping to maintain social distancing, avoid queues at supermarkets and other stores, and spend less time outdoors.

The rapid growth of e-commerce retail in India can be attributed to an increase in the size of the e-commerce sector, a favorable government policy of 100% FDI flow in e-commerce and a growing base of digital buyers. By 2027, e-commerce is expected to reach a market value of $200 billion. Moreover, it can be rightly said that the retail sector has undergone a digital transformation in the truest sense and this has been mainly fueled by the pandemic.


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