Did you know global retail e-commerce is expected to hit $8.1 trillion by 2026? With this expansive growth and a rise in cyberattacks, retail businesses must become more complex and technical than ever. To keep up with the pace of innovation while performing basic maintenance and support, retail businesses should explore working with a managed IT services provider to help create better customer experiences, explore new technologies, and stay proactive on ever-changing compliance regulations.
1. Improve Overall Security
A managed services provider helps retail businesses stay on top of ever-changing security and privacy regulations. Consumers care deeply about the security of their data, and maintaining their trust is critical. A managed IT services provider helps keep POS systems up to date and provides other software, hardware, and infrastructure support. That helps reduce the widespread effects of a potential cyberattack and keeps the most valuable environments extra secure.
2. Maintain PCI Compliance
The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) helps keep customer credit card information secure, and it’s critical to work with a managed provider with PCI DSS-compliant services. A managed IT services provider can provide regular cybersecurity scans and assessments to proactively identify gaps in cardholder data protection. With many retail businesses falling prey to cyberattacks, you don’t want to suffer the consequences of billions of losses in damages, customer trust, and brand identity.
3. Proactive Problem-Solving
Prevention goes a long way, and businesses don’t often have the internal resources to solve IT problems on the fly. With a managed IT service provider continually monitoring all your systems, problems never even reach your customer. They’re patched up before they become a major deal, but if a problem does arise, your expert provider can tackle it quickly.
4. Increase Uptime and Employee Productivity
The average retailer experiences 80 hours of unplanned downtime every year. This costs an astounding $5,600 per minute. A managed IT service provider creates a more reliable, stable environment that you and your employees can depend on.
5. Connect Multiple Locations
For retail businesses with multiple locations, it’s important for these individual stores to stay seamlessly connected. Your managed IT provider can establish SD-WAN to integrate a modern architecture across locations to link network connectivity over large geographical regions. Even as you open new locations, you have a strong foundational backbone.
6. Disaster Recovery
Disasters inevitably happen. In 2021, 44% of retailers experienced a ransomware attack, and the average ransomware attack payment was $925,162 in 2022. Managed IT providers help get your systems back online faster, which saves you from losing additional customer revenue. Customer data is a critical target for hackers, which is why retail businesses have seen heightened attacks in recent years. In the event your systems do go down, having a managed backup solution can reduce your downtime and mitigate the risk of any data loss.
7. Predictable Costs
Managed IT providers like TPx keep your monthly costs consistent, and a fixed payment structure reduces surprises. You can also seamlessly increase and decrease IT infrastructure in response to growth objectives and customer demand. As your organization grows and evolves, you can easily scale as your need for greater flexibility.
8. Future-Proof Your Technology
Let your managed IT provider stay on the cutting edge of new technology while you stay focused on getting more customers in the door and increasing revenue. Your provider’s expertise is in adopting the latest technologies to keep your business ahead of the curve. A smart managed services IT provider will proactively explore new technologies that could be a good fit for your retail business, giving you a competitive advantage.
9. Efficient Use of Internal Resources
Your internal team may not have the skills needed to handle all aspects of a complex IT environment. Augmenting your existing team by outsourcing pieces of your IT to an expert provider is a smarter use of both employee and internal IT resources, and a third-party provider can still partner closely to support in-house teams.
10. Adopt Cloud Communications
Adopting a unified cloud-based communication system helps businesses drive growth and cut costs. Retailers can decrease spending on software, infrastructure, and other platforms as cloud communications replace legacy PBX phone systems. This makes it easier for retail stores to connect with other locations and with their customers, making it more reliable and easier to manage.
11. Secure Internet Connectivity
A managed IT service provider has various internet connectivity options to best suit your retail business. From high speed internet access, network connectivity with SD-WAN, and 5G / 4G LTE, retailers can choose the type of internet and speed they need to keep their business running smoothly.
Contact TPx today to learn more about managed services for your retail business.