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Retail Stickies.jpgAs the shopping on Thanksgiving Day and the Black Friday rush reinforced, consumers are driven by different motivations these days. With a recovering economy that is slow to match consumer spending pre-2008, shoppers are changing their habits and are sometimes dropping loyalty and showing that good price, will trump all.

So as we travel deeper into the holiday shopping season, retailers are working their carefully crafted strategies in hopes of moving the most amount of merchandise at the largest profit point. Some retailers are doing this well, and some are still struggling to use the right sales and the right approach, mainly because they are having trouble collecting, analyzing, and using the data they need to respond to cost consideration, demand, and sentiment in real time.

So, as a retailer, how do you compete? How do you find real-time data and analyze it quickly enough to make ultra-quick and informed decisions?

The answer is in the software and solutions being used to help track inventory, power processes, provide real-time data, and use appropriate algorithms and formulas to provide predictive insights.

Look at a company such as Abercrombie and Fitch that recently announced their brand change and retail offering to expand into larger sizes, which they previously shunned and avoided offering to uphold their “exclusive, cool kid” image. A struggling company since 2008, Abercrombie failed to listen to their target audience (cool college kids) who slowed their spending with the retailer due to price, selection, and their outward actions of fat-shaming through comments of their CEO, Mike Jeffries, and skinny people advertising approach.

Perhaps if A&F focused a little more on the data, which would have reflected the shift from brand loyalty to price consideration and the frustrated sentiment of their audience, they might not have to make a massive brand overhaul to save their sinking ship.

SAP Performance and Insight Optimization services solution for retailers offers data and data visualization to help assess scenarios and apply predictive insights for more information decision-making. The experts from SAP services who are driving the solution are able to merge business insight with leading-edge modeling, forecasting, and performance and predictive analytics to optimize results and allow retailers to focus on effective strategies.

The solution takes the guesswork out of the decisions by providing reliable data –  something that often proves to be a challenge for retailers (especially those with on and offline sales). Rather than relying on standard industry rules and year-over-year reports to drive decision making, retailers can rely on SAP services to help transform challenges into opportunities. Read more about retail and SAP in the Meeting Your Unique Retail Needs with SAP® Custom Development Services brief.

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