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  • How We Did It: Partnership vs. Vendorship

How We Did It: Partnership vs. Vendorship

January 29, 2024

The Transformational Power of Data

Businesses have a unique opportunity to use data-driven technology to build brand awareness and drive results. The ability to understand the detailed preferences of new and existing customers is essential to their long-term success—even more so in today’s ever-changing, omnichannel marketplace.

When guiding customers toward the right solutions or assisting them with an implementation, it’s critical for technology providers to determine measurable, tactical goals that will boost both the customer experience and the bottom line of the business. At Epicor, our supportive partnership sets the stage for helping employees accept change, manage their implementation, and discover benefits of new technology long after the implementation is complete.

According to Sam Kirkland, Alliance Specialist, Sr. at Epicor who specializes in the retail industry, most retailers can benefit from the right technology solution in four key areas: cash flow management, employee productivity, consumer engagement, and business process improvements. “The key is to understand what the business is trying to accomplish,” Kirkland says. “If businesses share that, we can align education, training, software, etc., to achieve their goals.”

 

Positive Change

The first part of that alignment starts at the top with leadership buy-in. When company owners and decision-makers (even in a small shop, where leaders wear many hats) are excited about and ready to make the change to a new retail management system (RMS), they can convey the news about the upcoming implementation in a way that makes employees feel empowered, rather than fearful. The Epicor partnership is an instrumental part of this change management before, during, and after the implementation, Kirkland says. “We can do core functionality without disrupting business at the point of sale at go-live. In the months [after the RMS is in place], now we’re learning more about the system and its feature functionality sets” that can drive ongoing efficiencies.

 

Turning Insights into Action

Learning the ins and outs of the new system can help retailers find the right capabilities to deliver results. For example, a retailer looking to increase traffic might look at the demographics of the area and assess whether the current mix of products is targeting those shoppers. Data-driven insights can illuminate areas of possible change:

  • What are the sales figures on complementary products vs. selling each product solo?
  • Is there an eCommerce programme or social media plan in place, along with a means of tracking and analyzing responses?
  • Are products on the shelf, UPC-ready, available to purchase today, so buyers won’t check online and opt to pick up an out-of-stock item elsewhere?
  • What are peak days and times for shoppers, and are there consistent patterns?

 

Rewarding Loyalty

Loyalty programs are a key part of brand building, Kirkland says: “My definition of a connected consumer is when your business is the first thought of a shopper when they want a certain product.” Robust loyalty programs should be a good mix of high-visibility community events and data-driven knowledge of the buying habits and preferences of these customers. As an end-to-end implementation partner, “[Epicor] can understand the target audience and the accessible market. Let’s make sure your business strategy is set up for success.”

The right insight-driven buyer incentives can help deliver what Kirkland calls a “high value, high performance” retail experience. Customers are looking for seamless processes that anticipate their buying needs—and they aren’t afraid of higher priced items mixed in with the good deals. Successful businesses capitalize on customer data to make sure the right offerings are always ready to go—in other words, staying top of mind boosts the bottom line.

 

The Helpful Voice in the Room

In solidifying a strong partnership, Epicor takes businesses through the entire path of investing in technology—from initial curiosity to post-go-live support. With a finger on the pulse of their industry, we give companies the confidence of over 50 years of experience, backed by the reassurance of having a knowledgeable voice on hand to help provide guidance and direction. Companies of all sizes have benefited from this expertise. As Kirkland affirms (and this applies to all businesses, not just retail), if industry leaders are ready to explore the Insight Advantage, Epicor is ready to respond. “For those businesses who want to succeed based on data, or make decisions based on data, I want to talk to you.”

 

Get the conversation started. Learn more about Epicor solutions for your business.