Convenience is a core element of customer experience for all retailers, but nowhere more so than in the fast-paced environment of an international airport.

Ireland’s Shannon Airport is home to the world’s oldest duty free store. Established in 1947, retail staff were struggling with a problem common to many longstanding businesses: operating efficiently through multiple, disparate systems.

Speed and proficiency behind-the-scenes are crucial to providing customers with an effective, joined-up experience at the front-end – and this is something that can only be achieved by implementing a truly omnichannel operational solution.

Through iVend’s partner, TRC Solutions, Shannon Airport deployed the iVend omnichannel retail platform, with modules including terminal POS, contactless chip and PIN technology, loyalty, passes and analytics.

This has enabled key decision makers within the airport’s duty free establishment to gain a single view of all activities. Accurate real-time reporting is a cornerstone of our omnichannel platform, which Shannon Airport is now using to enhance its understanding of customer needs, and meet them quicker and more efficiently.

Read the full Shannon Airport case study

What Shannon Airport appreciates – as do many other retailers – is that omnichannel operations aren’t just key to meeting customer needs today; they are essential for ‘future proofing’ business development.

The number of channels and devices shoppers use to interact with retailers is only going to grow, and therefore reaching their expectation levels will become an even more complex challenge.

Add to this the increasing demand for convenience among time-poor consumers, and legacy systems that are struggling to cope right now will fall further and further behind the capabilities demanded of them.

While some businesses are choosing to ‘make do and mend’ by bolting on new functions to existing systems, this makes for a very complicated operational infrastructure, which can prove incredibly time consuming to fix in the event of a technical glitch.

Instead of taking this short cut, what retailers should be doing now is making smarter investments. We support this initiative by making our solution modular, so that functionalities can be added as businesses scale, or as increased capabilities are required.

Yes, a new retail solution is going to cost more than a temporary patch, but it will define your offering from the competition today, and ensure you can keep up with customer demand tomorrow.

Heritage is a wonderful thing when it comes to business history, but it shouldn’t be stood for when it comes to technology. Keeping up with the customer means selecting the sharpest tools in the box to ensure seamless service delivery.

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