06 Sep How Back-to-School Shopping Can Prep Retailers for Holiday 2022
Retailers look at the back-to-school and holiday seasons with both anticipation and anxiety. The success of back-to-school sales is often a precursor for what’s coming right around the corner — the almighty consumer holiday shopping season.
Despite what is happening with today’s economy and prices on the rise, parents plan to spend $661 per child on apparel and traditional school supplies, according to recent findings from Deloitte, which is an 8 percent increase over 2021 spending. And looking a little further down the road, holiday spending is expected to be on the rise again as well. According to PracticalEcommerce, total retail sales in the U.S. will grow about 3.5 percent to roughly $1.3 billion.
So, what does this mean for online and traditional brick-and-mortar retailers?
The obvious answer is to make sure shelves are stocked (early) and inventory can be replenished throughout the remainder of 2022. With supply chain disruptions still occurring, consumers have switched brand preference when forced. In fact, in the Deloitte report, 63 percent of shoppers expect stockouts during the back-to-school shopping season and 77 percent of those will switch to another brand to fulfill their needs.
There are a multitude of options that can be implemented in the distribution center or fulfillment center to ensure consumer expectations (demands) are met. To determine whether your distribution or fulfillment center could benefit from a technology upgrade, here are a few questions to consider:
Do your distribution operations processes improve efficiency while reducing errors?
Unlike outdated processes, voice automation solutions drive significant efficiency improvements without compromising accuracy. In fact, Voxware’s technology enables its customers to achieve accuracy rates of 99.99 percent while increasing productivity by more than 30 percent.
Can your distributions operations scale to meet seasonal surges in demand?
Not only can Voxware help companies operate more efficiently during significantly busy times, but its solution can also make it easier to bring new team members up to speed quickly. With VoxTempo, users no longer need to waste valuable time voice training. Instead, they go through a ten-minute tutorial using Natural Language Voice Recognition technology and can be productive that same day. This is proving to be extremely valuable for companies struggling to hire and retain warehouse workers.
Can you anticipate and address changing circumstances throughout the supply chain?
As shoppers become accustomed to expecting last-minute items ordered to still arrive prior to Christmas Eve, distribution operations that fail to plan for inevitable hiccups such as inclement weather or traffic delays risk disappointing customers when their expectations are at their highest. VoxPilot, Voxware’s supply chain analytics platform, can pull data on traffic, weather, and item selection into the same portal to enable distributions operations leaders and managers at every organizational level to make fast decisions that make on-time deliveries possible.
In short, companies that want to perfect their distribution operations to meet constantly increasing consumer expectations should consider deploying voice automation and supply chain analytics to maintain a competitive advantage. Companies can no longer run their distribution centers as they traditionally have. They must continuously look ahead and adjust.
To learn more about automation solutions from Voxware, contact us today.