Facing the retail apocalypse this Christmas? Embrace technology

2018 has been the year of retail closures and decorative led lights wholesale stores seeing losses like never before. However, wholesale christmas decoration tech might be the saving grace for owners

Christmas has traditionally held special significance for retailers. Though some say the end-of-the-year bump is overstated, the period that begins with Black Friday and ends with the advent of January nonetheless represents an opportunity for those in the sector to make a final push for sales before the year is out.

Needless to say that in a challenging retail kids wear wholesale landscape, this significance is amplified. It’s no secret that the sector is in a state of major transition, produced in part by developments in tech and changing consumer behaviour and the collapse of Toys R Us into administration proved that even major established brands were not immune to change. There will doubtless be retailers hoping that a strong performance at the end of the year will ease their woes and alleviate pressure but this is to put a plaster on a broken leg. There’s a lesson we can all take from the retail apocalypse: embrace technology because it’s here to stay.

It’s a lesson that has relevance far beyond the confines of the wholesale christmas ornaments suppliers sector. Digital transformation is vitally important to almost every industry and company – large or small. The investment of time and money required to undergo this transformation might be considerable but in the long run it will generate returns that make such costs negligible. What’s more, when the alternative could be total commercial failure, it’s not a question of if but when.

More important is to understand that embracing technology isn’t a one-time deal. A wholesale christmas gifts business must change as the technology it uses or should use evolves or comes into being. This requires a change in mindset and a business model geared towards constant adaptation. The most innovative companies are constantly exploring and experimenting with new or developing technologies such as blockchain and big data. They’re already thinking about the potential of 5G, which will be a hundred times faster than its fourth-generation counterpart.

But for smaller companies lagging behind others in terms of their level of digitalisation, the transformation should focus on making internal processes more efficient and bringing about a more enjoyable and engaging experience for their customers. With the time saved, they can build on this and look for ways that tech can be used in other areas – marketing, for instance or bookkeeping – until it becomes habitual to explore newly available technologies and see how they might improve their business.

There’s an idea that e-commerce appeared out of nowhere and took unsuspecting retail light up toys wholesale businesses by surprise. But that wasn’t the case. E-commerce sales were rising for years beforehand and retailers failed to act. At the heart of this is one of the most important reasons that businesses should embrace technology – access to information. Companies that invest in data, research and analysis can learn more about what their customers want and expect from them and take action accordingly. The alternative is to be replaced by new, disruptive companies that put tech at the top of their agenda from the off.

In 1995, the author Clifford Stoll claimed in Silicon Snake Oil that the prospect of e-commerce was “baloney” and in an accompanying article in Newsweek, he said: “No online database will replace your daily newspaper. No cd-rom can take the place of a competent teacher. No computer network will change the way government works.” Needless to say, Mr. Stoll was hopelessly off the mark.

What we can learn from his error and the struggles facing the retail sector, is that it’s easy to underestimate the potential of technology and easier still to under-appreciate the importance of embracing it. And entrepreneurs and business owners in all industries should bear this in mind.

To take on Walmart, Amazon in India, LOTS Wholesale to launch e-commerce platform in Jan

LOTS Wholesale Solutions, the Indian unit of the Thailand-based wholesaler Siam Makro PCL, will launch its e-commerce platform next month.

“The app is in the testing phase. By next month we will have an operational e-commerce platform,” said Tanit Chearavanont, managing director of LOTS.

The dropshipping india retailer claims to already have functional assisted e-commerce sales, where sales team collect the order from its business-to-business customers.

The company majorly deals in food items and plans to supply to kiranas, home-grown retailers and local suppliers in wholesale online shopping clothes India. The company claims to source produce from the farmers locally. The company believes that omnichannel is the future of wholesale business and expects over 30 per cent of the business to come from online.

The online launch of its operation is also a part of the expansion plan to take on already existing giants such as Walmart, Metro Cash and Carry Alibaba and Amazon.

“The plan is to give our customers the option of both walks into our store and shopping online. We also offer the option of delivery the products at their doorstep,” he added.

To have a competitive advantage, LOTS is geo-tagging customers to understand their requirements and buying patterns. With repeat rate of 60 per cent, the dropshipping india 1 lakh registered customers.

After launching in January the brand opened its first store in July. The wholesale retailer has two wholly operational stores, one in NSP Pitampura and other in Akshardham, in Delhi-NCR region. It aims to achieve store level profitability every three years after its opening.

LOTS plans to open five more stores in 2019 and achieves overall profitability by 2025. Every year it plans to invest Rs 200 crore in India and to continue investing the amount for the next five year.

In the last couple of years, Wholesale trade has witnessed a rapid growth in the country, especially after 100 per cent FDI allowance by the Indian government. It is estimated to be over $1 trillion market. There are around 12 million kirana stores and around 2 lakh hotels and restaurants for new and existing players in baby diapers online India wholesale.

On average around 45 per cent of stores are profitable at store level in the country. It won’t be an easy ride to grow and scale in as a price-sensitive market as in India. French retail giant Carrefour had a tough time in the country. And in 2014 it had to shut down its Indian jewelry wholesale operations. How Lots wholesale will fare, whether it will be able to keep up with demanding consumer market or not, only time will tell.

Apart from India, Siam Makro has a presence in Thailand, China, Cambodia and Myanmar.