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Nov 2014 - IDC FutureScape - Doc # 252327

IDC FutureScape: Worldwide Retail 2015 Predictions — It's All About Participation Now

Authors: Greg Girard, Leslie Hand, Spencer Izard, Miya Knights

This IDC study summarizes IDC Retail Insights' outlook for 2015 and the 24-month planning horizon beyond through the lens of the 10 decision imperatives that make up the best framework as IT and line-of-business decision makers and influencers plan and execute technology-related initiatives in the year ahead. The team scanned the global retail ecosystem to identify critical economic, technology, business, political, environmental, and legal developments that drive the 10 most important decision imperatives facing the industry's IT and LOB technology buyers and influencers.

"We see a diverse set of drivers — especially the spending power of digital natives, the exponential increase in the number of connected devices and interfaces, organized retail cybercrime, raising concerns about privacy and security, digital and mobile media spending and consumption, intensification of competition and cooperation from all quarters, and the shift to predictive and prescriptive analytics," said Leslie Hand, vice president, IDC Retail Insights. "In this context of 3rd Platform innovation accelerators on the planning horizon such as natural interfaces, the Internet of Things, cognitive systems, next-generation security, and psychologically predictive customer insight, retailers face ever-increasing constraints in the complexity and cost of legacy technologies and rising opportunity costs as they struggle with incremental changes in 1st and 2nd Platform technologies."

"Last year, the fifth anniversary of our coinage of 'omni-channel' as the go-forward retail paradigm, we recognized three Rs — relationship, relevance, and reciprocity — as the industry's defining characteristics. A year later, we see another characteristic building on these three, participation," Hand continued. "Relentless technology innovation underpins consumers' participatory behavior and expectations. The most successful retailers will find opportunities by putting mobility, analytics, cloud, and social to work in their customer and operations strategies, adopting omni-channel integration technologies and IT governance, unifying customer engagement for hyper-personalized loyalty, adopting product intelligence for marketing and competitive insight, employing location-based services via analytics-driven agile engagement and operations, utilize socially networked on-demand delivery services, and gain share with private-label merchandise."

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