The retail industry was a slightly late adopter to Salesforce, however, over the last couple of years I’ve seen an increasing number of businesses in the space recognise the need to give customers a connected, personalised shopping experience, across multiple channels.

Shelley Bransten, Senior VP, Salesforce explains; ‘The world of retail that so many of us grew up in has changed in more ways than we ever could have imagined. Technology has given consumers incredible power to quickly find whatever they need, but it has become difficult for brands to keep up with those demands, and really understand the needs of consumers on an individual level. Salesforce enables the future of retail with a unified platform for intelligent shopping experience on any channel, ensuring the fastest path to shopper success.’ 

At the beginning of 2018, Salesforce announced a number of new features to aid this. These capabilities included:

Integrating digital commerce with email marketing journeys in an aim to reduce abandoned cart rates.

Leveraging Instagram as a shoppable content tool.

Salesforce LiveMessage (a quarter of all shoppers use instant messaging for customer service).

Distributed Marketing – allows corporate retail marketers to prebuild customer journeys and deploy them to local stores and resellers.

These features, as well as a number of retail businesses being featured in Salesforce’s most recent customer success stories, demonstrates the growth of the use of Salesforce within the sector and the potential it has.

One such organisation leveraging this and recognising the shift to digital shopping is Adidas, who were featured heavily at the UK Salesforce World Tour. Through utilising a number of Salesforce products, they have created a bespoke digital approach which puts the consumer at the heart of everything the company does. This has resulted in a 24% currently neutral growth in North America across its brands, and a reported 59% increase in ecommerce globally, equating to circa €1 billion in online sales.

At a time when the retail industry is struggling, I ask my retail customers, what are you doing to engage customers, ultimately increasing sales and driving shopper loyalty?

If the answer isn't involving digital transformation, could you be the next Toys'R'Us?

As specialists in staffing for digital transformation, Lawrence Harvey are currently aiding many businesses such as YNAP and Fenwick to make technology at the heart of their business. Technology allows them to continually innovate and both of these companies for example, are already seeing enhanced experiences across content and commerce, enabling them to become industry leaders. 

So, what challenges is your business facing and what are you doing to beat the competition?