Wednesday, January 20, 2016

#bigdata and #retail : Still A Lot of Work Ahead

Big data has for sure a lot of opportunities ahead when it comes from retailing. Retailers own massive data but are still not using it properly. i wanted to share with you two clear examples.

Yves Rocher
I went Christmas shopping to health & beauty retailer Yves Rocher, as one of my relatives go quite often to the store. The salesperson ask me for the information of my relative as she could benefit from extra loyalty points. I give her the info. The salesperson then tells me she is a very good customer, one of the best of the chain. I then ask if she could give me information about the kind of products she buys in order to customize a bit more my gift. The salesperson tells me she does not have information as my relative goes to another store...

I used to go to Intermarché Noisy le Grand as it is nearby the train station of Bry sur Marne. I opened a loyalty card, in order to benefit from the promotions. Eventually, a closer to home location opened, at Bry sur Marne, 5 min from home. I went there, and I wanted to use the money I got on my card there. They told me it was not possible. Same thing when I went on vacation (Intermarché is every where. The network is so big they have a store each 17 km in France), and wanted to use my points there. They explained me I could get money in every store I shop in, but I can use the cash only in the store I opened my card.

As you can see in 2 examples, retailers are still using old information system that do not allow them to use the best of their loyalty reward initiatives. Big data is eager to narrow the gap, but considered how old the systems are, it's gonna be a while brick & mortar retailers will be able to switch to those new systems.