Cloud technology is growing in popularity than ever before, as companies in diverse industries are migrating their infrastructure to the cloud. However, many retailers are yet to join the trend due to in-house IT systems, which limit how they can adapt to an ever-changing market. Here are five reasons the retail sector needs cloud infrastructure to grow.
- Security of all the business-related data
One of the most significant risks retail businesses face is the loss of confidential data such as customers’ data, stock or inventory data, sales reports, and so on. Many companies have failed because of a data breach that exposed essential information to competitors. Although most business owners often think this cannot happen to them, recent studies suggest otherwise. A common mistake that leads to such problems is to save all business data locally, which increases the risk of data theft.
Cloud infrastructure can help tackle this challenge since all essential information is encrypted and stored off-site. This helps protect the data as well as make recovery easy in case it gets lost from the local systems.
- Inventory or stock management
Whether you run a single store or multi-store business, cloud infrastructure can help maintain stocks of products. This is a huge problem in the retail sector as customers don’t care whether the retail outlets they visit take stock, and will go to another outlet if they can’t find the products they seek. It’s unlikely that customers will wait for their favourite outlet to restock their goods, presenting a problem for retail businesses.
Cloud infrastructure can make inventory management easier, so retail outlets can get the stock updated in real-time. With the help of a cloud-hosted POS software, you don’t have to worry anymore about stock management. Furthermore, it can help sync the inventories of multiple retail stores manually, making it possible for retailers to grow their business.
- Simplified customer experience
Every retailer knows it’s crucial to deliver a great customer service experience as it can make or mar any business in the long run. With an array of alternatives, customers have never been more empowered when it comes to making purchasing decisions. Great customer experience can drive brand loyalty and growth, and one of the ways to rate customer experience is by the wait time involved in making purchases. Once a customer has chosen the products they want from a retail store, they don’t expect to wait endlessly during the checkout due to a lagging POS system.
To solve this, retailers can go for a POS backed by the cloud, which can process data faster to ensure that customers are satisfied when they visit the store. Thankfully, retailers can always update cloud specifications to meet the business demands for a seamless checkout at a single or multiple stores.
In today’s highly competitive world, running a profitable business is a huge challenge for most retailers. One way to do this is to cut costs in different areas of the business, such as production, operations, logistics, etc. Maintaining in-house computer hardware and IT professionals can constitute a huge burden on retailers, and this will, in turn, negatively impact the profitability of the business.
With cloud infrastructure, you only pay for what you use as you can get solutions that are tailored to meet your needs and budget. You will get whatever cloud hosting solution you need, such as software hosting, data storage, and IT support, among others, at a significantly lower cost compared to running in-house IT infrastructure.
- Business expansion
It is the goal of every retailer to grow and expand their business by opening more outlets in different locations. One of the biggest challenges, such as aspiring retailers face, is how to sync the data of all their stores with each other so they can make informed decisions. It can be tougher if the businesses are in different time zones.
Cloud technology solves this problem via real-time data synchronisation, which is possible by making use of advanced solutions based on the cloud. All processed data from the many outlets gets stored on the remote servers, giving room for the utmost focus so retailers can plan further business growth.
The retail industry is ever-evolving to meet the needs of customers, and one-way retailers can be positioned for profitability and expansion is by embracing cloud technology. The cloud makes this possible by providing flexibility and security that retailers need to grow their businesses.