Retail Transformation: The SKYPAD Prescription
Retail Transformation

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For the retail industry, the strategy of competitive advantage has hit a few speed bumps. The sector has transformed from a system of incremental change where small shifts created short-term leverage, to a continuum where change ignites change almost overnight. To achieve sustainable success in a digital marketplace, dynamic retail companies need expertise, efficiency, and scale. While making this statement is simple, successful execution requires leadership and a strategy that is grounded in foresight and critical thinking and is nimble and responsive enough to change. And that’s where the power of breakthrough tech solutions that solve real-life problems excels.

Retail is a margin industry. We believe that useful, standardized data output creates an increasingly efficient and creative retail environment that benefits consumers, suppliers, retailers, brands, and the environment, demonstrating that a long-term outlook can be holistically beneficial, especially to the bottom line.

New Markers for Success

If a simple definition of success in the retail industry is persuading a customer to purchase your products and pay a price that allows for profitability, there is nothing simple about the machinations and calculations required to get to that result. Operating in a digital marketplace, companies need high performance in every appropriate channel at all times, all while continuing to seamlessly expand and enhance customer touchpoints. What used to be simple merchandising decisions have evolved into a web of platforms, search engines, and channels all demanding investment for engagement, whether or not it converts to an immediate sale. And what’s more vexing is that successful retailers must outperform not only the competition — but themselves.

Safety in Numbers

Retailers can take some comfort that they are not alone. Multifaceted change is hard work. The transformation to new digital models and running a business holistically often requires partners. Just look at how the world’s leading technology firms have strategically partnered with complementary organizations to leverage advanced technologies and incorporate domain expertise. Microsoft collaborates with OpenAI, Apple designated Google as its default search engine, and Amazon Web Services (AWS) dominates in cloud networking for global businesses. These portfolio partnerships illustrate intelligent business decisions to partner up for accelerated success. It saves money in the long run to partner with a trusted tech partner that has tech expertise in its DNA. A successful technology collaboration activates the potential for dynamic business development, short-term and long-term. Admittedly, retail has been slower to adopt this shared-strength model. Identifying synergistic technology partners is now the baseline for success. So, how do retailers get off the sidelines and into the game?

Collaborative Partnership

Dynamic, shared-strength retail is built on investing in systems to automate low-level tasks so the more complicated activities can be executed through a combination of human skills supported by emerging technology. At SKYPAD we know how to balance the art and science of retail and have built a leading retail-vendor portal to alleviate mind-numbing repetitive tasks. Smart retail and brand operators have learned to embrace the opportunities presented by intelligent human-tech integration. Both fashion and retail are seasonal games, racing from collection to collection, and season to season, with little time to retool or adapt to new technology. The combined pressure of both internal and external quarterly earnings expectations often serves as a barrier blocking innovative, systemic change. This is a short-term orientation that chills long-term strategies and investments that may not promise a quick return on investment but will propel a brand into the future.

Retail Transformation

The lingering influence of retail’s merchant culture can also be a barrier to change. Mickey Drexler, Sam Walton, Les Wexner, and Steve Jobs are considered legendary merchant visionaries. They are retail executives who instinctively tapped into the cultural zeitgeist and created magic. But let’s face it, the industry has evolved from magic-making to data-driven strategies. Both can co-exist. In recent comments from Walmart’s current CEO Doug McMillon, he describes a experiencing decade-plus of sluggish transformation while the retail giant was evolving from big box to adaptive retail. He explains the balance between the company’s merchant traditions and the essential transition to a technology-enhanced organization is table stakes.

Retail’s Unique Challenges

SKYPAD empathizes with the challenges facing retailers today. Data accuracy often represents the difference between success and failure. We intimately understand retail reporting processes and systems that ensure data is aggregated accurately in an era where reporting errors can lead to misguided decisions or missed opportunities. The past is not a good predictor of solutions for today and the future. For example, in-house reporting solutions are inherently inefficient in our interconnected marketplace.

Based on market conditions and analysis of how retail traditionally uses data to make decisions, we created a retail/vendor portal. Our software is designed specifically to manage retail’s unique challenges. We blend deep retail knowledge with cutting-edge technology in a solution designed to bring our clients to new levels of efficiency with a pathway to exceed today’s market expectations.

Our portal offers a high degree of customization, allowing users to design reporting templates and data visualization options that meet their specific requirements. This breakthrough reporting solution responds to the complexity retailers face with increased data volumes, disparate data sources, and incohesive initiatives that lack integration. The portal is designed to eliminate costly development, streamline staffing, control maintenance costs, and address cybersecurity vulnerabilities. We are trusted by our partners to consistently deliver a secure data solution that alleviates compliance concerns and far exceeds most in-house reporting efforts with lower up-front, and ongoing maintenance and support costs.

Synchronized Retail Reporting

We know that accurate and timely intelligence lays a foundation for informed decision-making based on up-to-date information. We process data from the supply chain through attribution, creating a secure, actionable information stream that informs varied teams throughout our partner organizations, allowing them to pinpoint weaknesses and uncover opportunities. In other words: modern merchandising.

Our portal will help any merchant use standardized data output to create an efficient and creative retail environment that benefits consumers, suppliers, retailers, brands, and the environment. Contact us for more information and a free consultation. 

Note: SKYPAD is a Robin Report Innovators Network Partner

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