Proving the ROI: How to build a business case for new in-store technology

We don’t need to tell you how much the retail industry has transformed over the years. Ambitious competitors paired with the need for constant connectivity means that your consumers are spoiled for choice and have increasingly demanding expectations. Smart retailers know that good enough” isn’t, well, good enough. The competition is fiercely hot – hotter than that room Nelly sang about one time in 2002 – and the pressure is on to keep ahead of the curve.

An easy solution to stay competitive (while remaining true to brand and business model) is to upgrade your technology. But you also already know that proving how a new software would improve the overall return on investment is easier said than done. A recent RSR report shows that 32% of retailers are challenged to quantify the return on investment that will be seen with a new technology. That same report indicates that 25% of high-performing retailers are reluctant to invest in new technologies because of the cost their business occurs.

The good news? When you’re armed with the right data and strategy, creating a well-researched, winning business case for new in-store technology can be a cake walk – minus the cake (sorry).

Who Are Your Stakeholders?

We know you’re raring to go, but before you do anything else, it’s important to determine who you’re going to dazzle all your ideas with. In other words, who is best equipped and in the right position to review your case and make decisions based on your researched evidence? The earlier they’re involved, the more likely they are to support your case (and the more time you have to buy them motivational donuts).

Determine the Businesses Needs

If you’re seeing areas for improvement in your business, chances are you’re not alone. Reach out and talk to your key stakeholders. Lean on them and pick their brains for where they see some failings. As experts in their respective areas, they’ll have insights that will support your argument and can help identify other gaps. Don’t forget to include input from real users – they’re at the forefront of your product and have invaluable insight into what can be improved and can help you identify what the requirement for an effective solution are. For instance, maybe they’re looking for a product that untethers them from their workstation, allowing them to interact with customers and enhance their experience with mobile capabilities.

Rank Your Needs and Identify Possible Solutions

A great place to start your evaluation is by asking questions like: which problems need to be addressed first? Maybe you’ll also want to differentiate between what the software must-haves” and the soft-ware nice-to-haves” are. From there, you can determine your possible solutions. –While we know it’s tempting to want to dive into the flashy side of tech, it’s important to remember why you started this business case in the first place: improving your business. Forrester suggests starting the process of transforming your store with foundational technology tech can drive operational excellence.

The Proof is in the Pudding

The key to getting buy-in is to find as many financial benefits as you can to boost your resulting ROI. One way to do this is by showing how your proposed new technology can generate revenue. You could also highlight the cost efficiencies, such as improved inventory turnover or increased user productivity. Make the pudding look tasty and return-promising by showing that your proposed new tech will not only drastically improve your business’s day-to-day but transform your customer’s experience.

Ready to Learn More?

We’ve only just skimmed the surface here. To truly align your team, prove the ROI, and present a winning business case for new in-store technology, you’ll want to download the full whitepaper to learn more.

Want more? iQmetrix provides software that allows your specialty retail team to serve customers faster, more effectively, and with greater confidence than before. Join our weekly live demo to see our products in action.