In our blog The 6 Must-Have Features for Your Retail App, we spoke about what a great front-facing retail app looks like for your customers. But what about all of the nifty applications and software that work lucratively behind-the-scenes to streamline your business processes? When in-store and digital teams are empowered with the right tools, businesses in the retail industry can revolutionise daily operations and make better business decisions.
Let's start by exploring the different types of retail software that can help businesses boost their performance.
Types of Retail Management Software
Arguably the most important piece of software a retailer can have. Inventory management apps are the eyes and ears of a retailer. It will showcase all sorts of important details about stock - delivery dates, stock numbers, expiry dates (for food retailers) - in real-time, and track sales figures. The insights from inventory management software can help keep the supply chain in check by monitoring stock levels, displaying regular price updates, and ensuring customer demands are adhered to.
Customer resource management (CRM)
CRM software is a simple solution to personalising customer workflows. By analysing customer interactions and offering insights on customer trends, it's job is to ensure built-in customer loyalty. If a company has a good CRM solution, they can essentially track and optimise every step of an individual's customer journey.
Staff in retail environments have enough on their plates without having to manually coordinate shifts and wait for in-person approval from their managers on annual leave. Shift management software means that staff can book annual leave on-the-fly, communicate big updates, and can even enable staff to swap shifts and arrange cover if need-be. When it's used properly in conjunction with a good hiring process, it can ensure that stores are never over or under-staffed. Advanced shift management software can also include training programmes for onboarding new staff, and training existing staff.
One of the newer software solutions available to retailers is maintenance management. An app that contains a digital map of a physical store and its fixtures can be very handy when it comes to things like health and safety compliance. For example, if a wall fixture breaks and is dangerously stuck out - the issue can be logged instantly, signs can be put up to ensure customers do not go near the area, and maintenance can be scheduled through the application.
By the way, you can read more about how apps can help reduce admin efforts in your business in our blog 4 Ways to Less Admin with Apps.
So, now we know about some of the different types management software that exists for retailers, we can take a deeper dive into some of the benefits.
What are the benefits of retail management software?
What retailers are seeking to understand is how they can maintain optimal efficiency in their operations without overspending. Luckily, management software can draw a line in the sand when it comes to allocating costs. According to a study by Software Path done in 2020, Only 18% of small businesses use inventory management software, despite the fact that research by CNBC shows out-of-stocks, excess inventory, and returns cost retailers $1.75 trillion a year.
Fast onboarding and training
Employee management is not always what retailers first think of when creating amazing customer experiences. But customer engagement starts and ends with how they're interacting with a brand, and for many retailers, this involves other human beings - yes, even when you're an online retailer! It's no secret that when businesses invest in the skills of their people, they are much more likely to succeed and continue growing in what they do. In a Mckinsey report on Human Capital in 2022, they estimated - across four focus countries - that:
"The value of human capital represents roughly two-thirds of an individual’s total wealth. Skills acquired or deployed through work experience contribute an average of 46 percent of this value over a typical working life."
Retailers can secure and maintain high-caliber candidates when they implement effective employee management software.
There's no limit to the value of real-time analytics in the retail industry. Customer trends are changing all of the time, and the way people buy has undergone a drastic transformation in the last ten years. A 2018 study by Think With Google, found that regardless of where the purchase is made, over 60% of shoppers go online first. So, we can only imagine how this statistic might have grown in the last five years - particularly after a pandemic that left people across the globe confined to their homes. With this massive online presence in the retail industry, there has never been a better time to unlock the true potential of customer data in real-time with great software.
How much does retail management software cost?
One of the biggest questions that retailers have when considering using retail management software is how much it will cost.
The cost of retail management software can vary greatly depending on the features and capabilities that are needed. Generally speaking, most basic retail management software can vary from $50 to $500 per month depending on the desired functionalities but more advanced options can cost upwards of $500 a month. Unfortunately, these solutions often fall by the wayside in terms of being customisable and fast to launch.
What sets Builder.ai apart?
Builder.ai delivers apps for retailers faster and more cost effectively with an AI-powered assembly line and a network of over 2000 talented developers. We figured that 80% of all software is composed of the same 500 features, so we coded these into reusable lego-like blocks that we can use to quickly assemble the framework of your app idea. Then, our team of developers can help you turn that framework into your dream, customised app that will get your retail business booming from the inside-out. We take pride in being the only low-code/no-code solution that gets the balance just right when it comes to speedy development and in-depth customisation.
Because of how we code our features, we don't charge for developing anything from scratch, and we definitely don't take any marketplace fees. We also include post-production maintenance in every build.
Why don't you book a demo with us today to find out more? We'd love to talk to you about some of the issues you might have as a retailer, and how we can help solve them with an app.
Rohit is the Senior Manager of Enterprise Marketing at Builder.ai. He comes with over 8 years of experience managing multiple B2B & B2C brands, across multiple geographies. Rohit is an expert on solution building for enterprises in big industries.