A survey of retail registrants for the NRF show reveals that, while they are keen to adopt CRM technology to help them drive sales, some still have a long way to go.
All those who responded to a survey of more than 1,300 registrants for the National Retail Federation Show in New York plan to invest in retail CRM activities in 2002. The survey, conducted by Blue Martini Software, Inc., revealed that direct mail is the most popular option, with 68% of respondents ranking it a high priority. Also ranked as high priorities were e-mail campaigns (55%), loyalty programmes (50%), online promotions (32%), and clienteling and in-store promotions (23%). The poll focused on retailers' ability to identify customers at the point of purchase, to access information about those customers in real time, and to act on that data to increase sales.
Know where the profit comes from
While most retailers don't already have retail CRM solutions, 71% of "data savvy" retailers do use their customer data to manage customer relationships and increase sales. The most popular ways of doing this are by using direct mail campaigns and loyalty programmes, with about half of retailers doing this. However, only 41% are able to identify their most profitable customers and use that data to target promotions.
Want data warehouses
Nearly half of retailers surveyed don't have a data warehouse, so can't identify their most valuable customers. Of these, six in ten said that they would like to have this capability. However, 41% do have the technology and are using the data in CRM activities, such as direct mail, e-mail campaigns, in-store promotions, online promotions and customer loyalty programmes. But while four in ten retailers engage in email campaigns, only one in ten engage in online promotions based on individual customer data.
According to Monty Zweben, chairman and CEO of Blue Martini, "Over the past decade, most retailers have spent the bulk of their IT budgets on supply-chain optimisation and merchandizing systems - basically, SKU and inventory management solutions designed to support the buy-side processes. As we move into 2002 retailers are shifting their focus to providing the sales associates at the point of sale with greater knowledge about their customers."