Retailers make technology key focus for customer experience improvements in 2018

53% of retailers say technology is their key priority for New Year.

More than half (53%) of retailers will focus on using technology to improve the shopping experience in 2018. This top priority was identified in research commissioned by Zynstra, an award-winning software provider of intelligent edge infrastructure, purpose built for the retail store.

The focus on technology in the New Year is especially relevant given that currently only 27% of retailers feel their infrastructure is fully able to support these plans to improve customer experience in store. Only one-quarter of retailers said their in-store IT allowed them to frequently and regularly improve their in-store experience and one-fifth said they had to delay or reject a past roll out of new in-store applications because of IT limitations, costs or concerns.

Additional priorities for 2018 were identified as improving operational efficiencies (44%), enhancing security and compliance of in-store IT (42%), in-store innovation (34%), mitigating the risk of end-of-life technology (27%), and incorporating all channels of engagement in a single platform (17%).

“2018 is a crucial year in laying down the infrastructure that will reduce costs today and provide a long-term platform for a consistent and intentional customer experience. In the challenging retail conditions that are predicted, those who don’t take this step are going to lose out,” says Nick East, CEO, Zynstra. ​

“In today’s retail environment, particularly those organisations with a distributed branch network, having the right technology in place to support both operations and overall customer experience is a key competitive advantage. Increasingly, we’re finding the biggest impact on store cost and day to day operational efficiency improvements lie in implementing an intelligent edge infrastructure with end-to-end management and control.”

In addition, the research uncovered that virtualisation of point of sale systems is playing an increasingly important role. Twenty-three percent of retailers said they were using it already, while 26% said they would adopt it as soon as possible, and 21% said they would do so in the next two years.


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