With $182.4 billion spent in the retail industry, there’s no doubt information technology (IT) plays a massive role in making these staggering amounts of sales happen around the world. IT is critical for modern retailers to succeed and grow in a competitive landscape. Did you know that 4.4 million new businesses are started every year? Retailers face extreme challenges in a crowded, high-stakes market where consumer demands are constantly evolving. Modernized IT can create a competitive edge for retailers, but they must also be aware of the IT challenges present. We’ll outlined common IT challenges that retailers face and how to overcome them.
1. Multiple Networks for Different Locations
For small business owners, expanding to multiple locations can be a dream come true in terms of their growth strategy. However, new storefronts now need a connected and secure IT network. A software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN) can create a centralized management location for different avenues of network traffic. This creates critical connectedness while offering optimal network performance across retail locations.
2. Poor In-store Wi-Fi
34% of shoppers actively search on their phones when purchasing something in-store. Solid in-store Wi-Fi is integral to a great customer experience, ensuring customers can feel good about making an educated buying decision. Without reliable Wi-Fi, webpages are slow to load, and customers might get frustrated enough to leave without buying anything. Not only is stable Wi-Fi critical for customers, but employees can also be more efficient and productive when checking inventory and assisting customers.
3. Distributed Communication
As your retail business grows, communications become more complex. Luckily a powerful unified communications solution like UCx with Webex combines team chats, virtual meetings, and reliable cloud-based phone in an all-in-one solution to assist customers. Gone are the days of relying on clunky physical phones to call other locations. Now, unified communications make it easy for distributed employees to collaborate, assist customers, provide updates to each other, and, overall, grow your retail business’s revenue. Plus, as locations get farther apart, your communication tool scales with you without purchasing additional equipment.
4. Increased Cyberattacks
Retailers experience the highest rate of ransomware attacks, with a 75% increase over the previous year. When retailers have cyberattacks, they’re often high-profile, resulting in business downtime, loss of reputation and consumer trust, and reduced business revenue. Retailers store highly valuable debit and credit card information, which makes them a prime target for cyber attackers. It’s critical for retailers to create strong cybersecurity measures that ensure their infrastructure, customer, data, and payment information remains secure. For retailers looking for top-notch security, TPx’s managed security services can help build airtight infrastructure.
The IT Solution to Overcome Retail Challenges
TPx helps fast-growing retailers create consistent customer experiences, whether they’re shopping from their mobile device, your app, or in-store. Having a managed IT services provider that you can count on to help you overcome IT challenges is critical. TPx’s managed services can be a cost-effective solution for retailers looking to outsource IT to industry-leading experts. Contact us today to learn more.