Are you a retailer that runs on ‘gut feel’? Do you shrink back in fear when customers pull out their iPhone, complete with a buyers’ price guide app? Do you turn a blind eye to the eroding sales? Are you making excuses to justify your changing fortunes? Do you hear about other retailers selling online and wonder how they are doing it? Do you hope that you’ll wake from this nightmare and wish that internet and mobile buying will just ‘go away’ so that you can get on with your business?

It’s no secret that retailers have generally been slower than most industries to adopt IT technology. The problem is that consumers are increasingly IT savvy, they have access to technology and they will use it to drive their buying habits.

IT technology for retailers is not a nice-to-have anymore – it is a life saver.

So what do you do if you are a retailer and you think you are behind the times?

Here is a plan:

1) Take stock of your present situation

2) Develop an IT strategy plan

3) Make sure core transactional platforms are in place: POS, inventory and financials

4) Link and combine your website with your core systems

5) Build a reporting dashboard

6) Integrate mobility and social media into your business

If you are behind the eight ball, it can seem daunting to think about how far you have to go to reach your final goal. The key is to breakdown the task into a series of steps and stay committed to a plan.

You may also feel you want to run before you can crawl. Whilst there are some prerequisites, it doesn’t take much to get moving and enable some of the more creative or interesting applications to be deployed.

If you want to get your retail business powered by IT, talk to Professional Advantage or visit our website here.

Blog written by Chris Pennington, Consultant to PA. The opinions expressed here are the personal opinions of the writer. Content published here does not necessarily represent the views and opinions of Professional Advantage Pty Ltd.

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