Off to the cloud: virtualization in retail
The fast and flexible processing of data contributes much to the success of a company, including retail stores. Cloud technology is a cost-effective and low-risk means of optimally providing information on products, customers, or processes at any time. This is also a highly efficient way to process data. However, retailers are still not fully aware of the opportunities and possibilities this technology offers, and they also lack the knowledge about how best to make the transition to the cloud.
Storing non-critical applications in the cloud
There are numerous ways in which commercial enterprises can make use of cloud technologies. They can move complete processes, IT services and infrastructure, or simply storage space for data, to private or public clouds. When paired with appropriate security concepts, this is an attractive option, especially for non-core applications. It is particularly worthwhile running office or HR applications as services from the cloud
. The latest applications for customer relationship management (CRM), which are especially important for retailers, are now available only from the cloud.
Advantages of cloud technology
A great advantage of providing IT resources
and programs from the cloud: Users can book them flexibly and are not tied in for long periods of time. This enables adjustments at short notice to unforeseen peaks in demand, such as before public holidays or during discount campaigns. It also allows retailers to react quickly to new trends.
By using services from the cloud, retailers can avoid high capital expenditure. They only have to pay monthly operating costs for what they actually use. The effect: Without considerable monetary expenditure, retailers have the opportunity to test new solutions with relatively low risk. This increases both agility and flexibility in their core business and helps to quickly launch and implement new business models and processes.
In addition, the user transfers any risk associated with the cloud application to the provider by means of clearly defined service level agreements (SLAs). Thanks to cloud computing, this allows the retailer to focus on its core business.
Attractive for customer service and omni-channel commerce
Standard information that is accessible to authorized employees at any time: This is particularly beneficial when connecting numerous branch stores. However, even a single retail location would profit from using cloud technology. With just one click, employees can access all data on a particular customer and thus quickly give them the best possible advice, thanks to cloud-based, cross-channel CRM software. And a centrally manageable online platform is also a useful tool for creating a uniform appearance on different channels in omni-channel commerce. Thus, cloud technology forms the cornerstone for the entire digitized customer journey