8 Retailing Hacks That Will Help Your Retail Store Grow

1. People are Number One

Treat your people (customers & staff) as number one in your value chain. Companies need to train their staff on how to help the customer. In the same way, companies need to educate their customers about how to interact with your products and how to use them. No people means no business!

2. Open more eCommerce stores

Like retail stores, opening lots of eCommerce stores increases revenue and distribution. This growth model needs to apply to your online presence … open more ecommerce stores and market to all your markets appropriately.

3. Know your numbers

Increase your understanding of your business by building dashboards across the company. Measure everything – bricks & mortar stores, people, inventory and online.

4. Be transparent

Transparency is essential in business. Share everything with your customers including where stock is made, what it is made of,  how it is made, and why it is made. Allow your customer to really buy into your ethos and reason for being. Allow for your customers to access their history and complete transactions at any time online.

5. Technology sets you apart

Retail companies in the future will be completely underpinned by technology across all elements of their operations. Ideally, these services should be outsourced to help with cost reduction.

6. Centralise your distribution

Centralised distribution is a retailing business model that will help you to stay competitive with Amazon and other large online consolidators.

7. Customer service counts

Customer service is a winning formula that creates longevity by fostering customer loyalty. The end of disconnect with the customer is here and complete immersion and personalised awareness will be necessary.

8. Communicate with your customer in the way that they prefer to connect with you

Different customers prefer to contact you in different ways. Some prefer to call, others prefer email, some prefer live chat, and others prefer to contact you via social media. It is vital to have multiple streams through which your customers to contact you. Whichever one your customer chooses, reply to them through that stream.

 

Contact RetailCare for more information.
Let us help you make your retail life easier.

Retail in Melbourne

 

2012 in Review.

Retails leading thinkers
We have had some great experiences and introductions, such as meeting with Ross McDonald, Industry Leader – Retail, Media & Classifieds at Google  ; Christine Cross,  board member at Tesco and Woolworths, Doug Fraser from Facebook Analytics and many others.

RetailCare has established a great relationship with www.fashion.ebay.com.au this year and this has resulted in benefits to RetailCare customers such as probationary periods being waived and creation of best practice stores.

PwC Retail Innovation Series
RetailCare have been guests at every breakfast sessions in the innovation series this year. Thank you to Stuart Harker, head of Retail at PwC.

The Future of Retail:
RetailCare is getting  referrals from PwC for instore and online eRetailer, eWholesaler and the value add understanding that comes with the Point of Sale perspective has highlighted RetailCare in the eyes of the experts as the business to take Retailers through the 3rd and 4th generation of Retail.

eRetailer
The eRetailer platform and RetailCare’s ability to value add and customise to achieve the desired results has been fantastic this year. True multichannel retailing, with Forcast now trading across 35 stores with CI POS and online with eRetailer  and through eBay Fashion Gallery and Westfield  store. All controlled and managed by CI Office.
www.Roadhouse.net.au has gone live after a rebuild with a fantastic video and great look. Watch this space as these guys focus on their content marketing and the creation of an innovative marketing campaign. See the movie here.

eWholesaler
www.mitchellswholesale.com is the first fully integrated wholesale site created by eRetailer and RetailCare. This features wholesale customer prices, contact, credit relationship and ABN confirmation. Have a look at the wholesale order grid created by RetailCare.
The next version of CI Office incorporates new email features for summaries, purchase orders and invoices directly from CI Office.

Forward Planning
Using RetailCare’s skills and expertise to help you refine and redefine your business processes will help you to address how to use your POS/Office system to streamline your business.
We have saved our customers pain and time through www.CIWebReport.com customisation. Whilst the real time sales info was cool, it has gone even further with custom inventory and sales reporting built into the marketing tools.
As online retail shifts from a simple cash register online to an integrated supply chain and invoicing system, the RetailCare perspective becomes more relevant than ever. Currently producing eCommerce that sits at 3.5. We are now working on evolving towards 4th generation. This means that the role of the customer has shifted from being the target to being central in the sales process. Social Media and Big Data enable significant intelligence and targeting while the 3rd generation is focused on lower the cost of fulfillment.

Customer Engagement Sessions
For 2013 we will continue our monthly forums. In 2012 we hosted 3 sessions sharing our market intelligence and knowledge of the Retail world. As a result, we will be involved in planning sessions with clients over January.

If you are reviewing your business during this time, let us know.

Support
We also would like to remind you that our offices will be closed for trading from 3:00pm on Friday 21st December 2012 and will reopen on Monday 7th January 2013.

If you need urgent support during the break, it is best to email us at [email protected] or to call the support line 03 9514 9680.

Ibis World Report – October 2012 – “More Tax Please”

Ibis World Report – October 2012 – More Tax Please

www.ibisworld.com.au | (03) 9655 3881 | [email protected]

Who could be serious about raising taxes, short of suggesting a political death wish for an incumbent government or an opposition party seeking to govern?
Most genuine and pragmatic economists and politicians: that’s who would support the idea. Australia is a low-taxed nation by OECD standards, and we are struggling to make ends meet. Some of that is to do with waste, and always will be – it is the nature of the bureaucratic behemoth. But much of it is to do with social equity and equanimity, without suggesting the creation of a ‘nanny state’ such as a number of the EU members have become. But there are pressing social needs still to be addressed.

Australia is now taxed at a lower rate than five years ago, partly due to the impact of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC), as the first chart shows.

Our taxes are now 5% of GDP lower than at the end of the last century in F2000.
That is $75 billion less taxes this year than would have prevailed at the then 30.6% of GDP, compared with 25.6% currently. And we don’t have to quite go back to the 30.6% level to balance this year’s or the immediate future years’ budgets.

Given that we have been running deficits now for some five years, governments have been avoiding tax (increases) in an attempt to show responsibility. It is nothing of the sort: it is tax avoidance.

In this second decade of the 21st century, it is tax avoidance by governments across the world that is more serious than corporate or personal tax avoidance – all three sectors involving cheating as they do. Tax dodging by individuals and corporations is a practice that is a century if not millenniums old. But tax avoidance by governments, while sporadic throughout history, has become rife in recent decades.

It is silly to just look at an international taxation league table without looking at the actual spending by governments – the difference being deficit spending which, if becoming chronic, leads to a GFC crisis of the sort now led by Japan, the European Union and the United States, which account for 44% of world GDP this year.

The second chart shows the estimated government spending – some at scary levels – by 22 of the world’s largest nations in 2012, together with the shortfall in taxes (deficit).

Hardly any of these shortfalls are serious for a single year, although those for the United States, Japan and the United Kingdom would be of some concern in any year. But if continued, they lead to the GFC we now grapple with: a classic ‘boiling frog syndrome’.

Government tax avoidance occurs when governments promise an unfunded agenda. Doing that at the onset of a recession is considered sound economic and fiscal practice, especially if the excessive spending is in capital expenditure rather than consumption expenditure, as it creates more immediate jobs and jobs for the future.

But when it is done during the long business cycle (averaging 8.5 years in Australia), and year after year when there are no recession-prone conditions, it converts to careless if not dishonest government. Economics and government budgets will always be about unlimited demands being constrained by limited resources.

We have this situation in Australia where over $150 billion was spent without being covered by taxes and other income – which dropped by 5% of GDP over the past decade as mentioned earlier – and the government now needs to find more receipts to cover honourable goals such as universal dental cover, disability support, better education, higher refugee numbers and other programs.

Promises from any party in power should be accompanied by the wherewithal.
The solution is simple in Australia’s case: raise the GST income by removing the exemptions and raising the rate to 12.5% instead of the current 10%. The average in the OECD group is currently 17.5% (ranging from 5% to 23% as seen in the third chart) so a 12.5% rate still leaves the nation lightly taxed both at the GST as well as the total tax level (only back to the 2007 level) and could pay for the government’s promises.

Compared with nations that are direct participants in the GFC, unlike Australia and most of Asia that are bystanders, we have a relatively painless way of balancing budgets and avoiding chronic tax avoidance by government. It’s not that hard.

Other nations on the second chart, however, face the dual challenge of raising taxes and cutting expenditure during the course of this decade – especially those nations that have turned themselves into what is called a ‘nanny state’. That probably fits most nations where the tax take is at an unsustainable level of 40% or more of GDP.

Some would suggest the bar should be drawn even lower in the interest of more self- reliance, say one-third of GDP and certainly no more than 37.5% of GDP.

Thankfully, Australia is nowhere near either of those levels. And we have been instituting some self-reliance measures such as the superannuation level, now on its way to 12% of wages, that should ensure an adequate and comfortable retirement for most Gen Xers, and virtually all of the Net Generation (currently under 30 years of age).

But for Australia and other countries – many far worse off than us through massive debt and other problems – to suggest low taxes or fixed levels as a share of GDP is a virtue is to have heads in the sand, and usually it is a case of pure political hypocrisy. It is bad government, lacking in vision and leadership. Properly explained, voters can accept – albeit grudgingly – a modest rise in taxation. Need we be reminded of the tragedies of Greece, Spain, Italy, Japan and others with debt mountains and, in some cases, horrendous unemployment problems.

Citizens deserve better.

www.ibisworld.com.au | (03) 9655 3881 | [email protected]

Smart Company Report

Australian retailers still not ready for internet: Experian report shows 53% don’t have online sales channel

This is the RetailCare 3rd Generation Integrated eCommerce response to the article as it relates to our offering.

The report has found five main reasons businesses aren’t investing in eCommerce:
1. Executive supports the move, but don’t take action – only 57% of retail marketers indicate managers believe online is a priority.
a. Fear of making an expensive wrong choice
b. Budget considerations for scope creep
c. Package fits into fixed budget


2. Lack of infrastructure, with only 45% saying CRM tools are important.
a. In built CRM with transporter to connect to existing CRM tools
b. Dispatch process and tracking built in
c. Human resource requirement limited with integrated system

3. A lack of digital marketing to attract customers, especially in SEO: 51% of retailers don’t have SEO in their marketing strategy for the next 12 months.
a. SEO ready site
b. Weekly budget for SEO

4. A wariness of social media: 54% don’t use Twitter, and 47% don’t have a Facebook page and don’t intend to make one.
a. In built social media with inbuilt moderation (using FB settings) to cover swearing, age etc.
b. Placement on product pages for LIKES

5. A lack of sophistication in actual retail storefronts, with only 21% using loyalty programs, only 45% using online vouchers and only 17% offering discount codes online. And, in a surprising revelation, only 22% use a “you may also like” feature on their websites.
a. POS loyalty program
b. Centralised CRM
c. Centralised STOCK
d. CI Web marketing tools

 

RetailCare is offering a fixed price, fully integrated system from Point of Sale to BackOffice and extending out to the web.  This is a professional system with full support.