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Study: Top-performing retailers reach out to mobile customers

Winning retailers may partially owe their business victories to location intelligence.

According to a new study from Retail Systems Research, “Location Intelligence in Retail: The Value of ‘Where,’” retail winners are much more likely than their peers to utilize location-based intelligence and analytics technology to deliver a personalized experience to mobile consumers than their lower-performing peers. Location-based intelligence is enabled by the geo-location data created principally by consumer smart mobile devices, and new analytical tools associated with big data.

The study defines “retail winners” as respondents whose same-store/comparable channel growth rate is above the industry average of 4.5%. Eight percent of respondents were classified as winners, while 92% had average or below-average growth rates.

A majority of all respondents (78%) agreed “customers are increasingly mobile – we need to be where they are.” And similar percentages of winners (87%) and other respondents (82%) said reaching and engaging customers is very important.

However, winners were much more likely than their lower-performing peers to find the following capabilities very important:

• Deriving new customer attributes from location data for CRM systems (85% vs. 64%)
• Routing and delivery (85% vs. 62%)
• Targeted personalized marketing (80% vs 61%)
• Using location intelligence to grow market share (76% vs. 64%)
• Proximity marketing (in and around the store) (76% vs. 56%)
• Modeling and forecasting using geographical data and analysis (75% vs. 57%)

Winners and other respondents also said mobile will be one of the two most important channels for location-based tracking three years from now in similar percentages (55% of winners and 51% of others). But 59% of other respondents said stores will be one of the two most important channels in three years, compared to only 47% of winners. Winners were slightly more likely than other respondents to cite branded online channels and third-party online marketplaces. Winners were more than twice as likely to say messaging such as WeChat and Messenger (7% vs. 3%), and 29% of winners and 30% of others said social sites.

Retail Systems Research conducted an online survey from December 2018 through January 2019 and received answers from 116 qualified retail respondents. Seventy-three percent were headquartered in the U.S., 26% in the U.K., and 1% in Europe.
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