This article was first published in the Winter 2014 issue of Speak
Today’s grocery industry is changing. And fast. Customers are more discerning than ever, and don’t think twice about shopping from multiple stores in order to get the best deals. Armed with price and product information that they have garnered online, they will often shop for staples from a discounter and then top up with speciality items elsewhere.
With all this in mind, it would seem that achieving a customer’s lifetime of loyalty is a thing of the past. While this may be true to some degree, creating an exceptional experience can undoubtedly keep the customer coming back for more. This means going above and beyond expectations and attracting customers through more than blanket discounting – they need to deliver a local approach, regardless of whether they are a small, niche business or a big global brand. It’s about identifying target customer groups and presenting them with the best possible assortment, in the right location and with accurate inventory levels.
Doing this requires new levels of insight. And, thanks to the power of the cloud, it’s never been easier to achieve. No longer do retailers need a huge data warehouse to mine data, run basket analysis or achieve refined category management. It’s now far more cost effective to understand customers through tools such as behavioural cluster planning, which helps retailers to understand variation at the lowest level: product by product, category by category. Today, with just a click of a mouse, retailers can take information and drill down into actionable insight. Even a 1,000-store supermarket can understand their customer and become local.
At Galleria, we spend our time helping retailers big and small to achieve the perfect localised strategy. We do this by delivering retailer and supplier category planning, automation, optimisation solutions and consulting services. We provide customer-focused solutions for clustering, automated assortment and space optimisation, supported by detailed analytics and reporting tools.
Microsoft technology is a fundamental part of what we do. We’re a Microsoft shop from top to bottom and its solutions help to bring together the visual aspects of a store as well as the science of where to place products, how many to order, in which stores and for which demographic. Easy to use and familiar, Microsoft technology helps our customers to get the best out of their tools and deliver new highs in customer centricity that can help them achieve the Holy Grail in today’s landscape: customer devotion.
Ian Duncan-Lewis is CEO and Mike Humphreys is CTO at Galleria
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