4R Systems President & CEO, Mark Garland, sat down with Jared Brown, the Senior Analyst at Aubuchon Hardware. Mark asked Jared some questions about Aubuchon Hardware, a large privately owned hardware retailer in the northeast united states.
In 2019, a lot of the retail spotlight was focused on BOPIS, Buy Online Pick Up In Store. Brick and Mortar retailers rushed to attract the latest trend of shoppers who wanted to save time and shipping costs by purchasing items ahead of time online and picking it up in store. Retailers loved how it was driving foot traffic to their stores, often leading to additional purchases once they were on site. Now, enter 2020 and COVID-19; another wrench is thrown into the retail industry. Retailers who were hesitant to implement BOPIS are now forced to offer the option or risk losing sales. 2020 not only highlighted the importance of BOPIS, but it also introduced a sister option: BOPAC, Buy Online Pick Up At Curb. According to a recent study, curbside orders have increased by 208% during the pandemic, and 59% of customers say they are more likely to continue curbside pickup after the pandemic.
Assortment Optimization is a powerful tool. It can help increase profit and improve customer experience and loyalty. Assortment optimization combines cutting-edge machine learning techniques, an agile continuous improvement methodology, and flexible customization to accommodate unique business requirements. Like other related supply chain and inventory solutions, assortment optimization utilizes machine learning techniques and AI to find the optimal assortment for every SKU in each store location. However, assortment optimization offers other unique benefits.
The retail world of today is very different than it was 20+ years ago (and, yes, I’m old enough to remember). But, like the fashion world, some retail trends are coming full circle and starting to make a comeback (remember thinking bellbottoms would never return?). Retail used to be focused on the customer experience. Do you remember getting excited to go to Woolworth with your grandparents just so you could visit the soda fountain for a grilled cheese and milkshake? Years ago, shopping wasn’t just an ‘in and out’ thing. It was an all-day outing with the whole family. It was an experience.[Read more…]
The holiday shopping season is right around the corner and for many retail owners, this can be a stressful time for many reasons. There are larger crowds, a need for extra staff, the general strain of the holiday hustle and bustle and the guessing game of how much extra inventory you’re going to need in your store to accommodate those crowds. [Read more…]