Total Retail's 2019 Retail Technology Report: Omnichannel Technology Spending on the Rise
Due to the cross-channel behavior of today’s consumers, shifting from channel to channel and device to device in the same purchase journey, retailers and brands are spending more of their technology budgets on systems and solutions that enable omnichannel operations — e.g., order and inventory management systems. At the same time, they've yet to fully buy into the emerging technology that’s generating buzz, but as of now lacks quantifiable return on investment data.
These are just two of the key takeaways from Total Retail’s 2019 Retail Technology Report, released today and produced in conjunction with Arm Treasure Data, an enterprise customer data platform. For the survey upon which the Retail Technology Report is based, Total Retail surveyed its audience of retail executives to get a better understanding of their current usage of technology, future technology needs and wants, and the buying technology processes within their organizations. Specifically, we wanted to know how their spending on technology was going to change — if at all — in 2019.
Highlights from the data collected include the following:
- Nearly three-quarters (74 percent) of retailers are planning to increase technology spending in the next 12 months. What is that money being earmarked for? The biggest increases in spending are planned for inventory and order management systems, as well as marketing automation — driven by increases in artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML).
- AI is the clear front runner as the emerging technology that retailers are betting on having the biggest impact on the industry in the next 12 months. The multiple applications for AI within a retail organization — customer service, personalized marketing, optimized logistics, etc. — make it an attractive investment target.
- Integrating new technology solutions with existing, oftentimes legacy systems is the top tech-related challenge for retailers and brands.
- Retail organizations are measuring the success of a new technology investment primarily through increased revenues and cost savings generated as a result of the technology. At the end of the day, it all goes back to the retailer’s bottom line.
Total Retail's third annual Retail Technology Report provides valuable insights into the technology landscape within the retail industry. The data collected from 100-plus retail executives serves as a road map for retailers and brands, identifying the technologies their competitors are currently investing in as well as what they’re targeting for future spend.
Download Total Retail’s 2019 Retail Technology Report today.
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Melissa Campanelli is Editor-in-Chief of Total Retail. She is an industry veteran, having covered all aspects of retail, tech, digital, e-commerce, and marketing over the past 20 years. Melissa is also the co-founder of the Women in Retail Leadership Circle.