In the last post, we talked about performance of retail store data movement and how it needs to be in real-time to attract and retain customers.
Then there’s security. If we learned one thing in 2014 it is that data breaches are haunting retailers. According to a Security Week blog post that sourced data from Gemalto, 2014 saw one billion records compromised in 1,500 data breaches worldwide; compared to 2013, those numbers are an increase of 80 percent in term of data records and 40 percent in terms of breaches overall. The top two sectors for breaches were Retail and Financial Services. No one is predicting 2015 numbers to shrink.
Retailers are working at every touchpoint to secure customer data to protect their consumers and their brands. Real-time data collection and data movement from retail outlets require the highest levels of encryption to secure customer data.
When retailers look to appliance-based solutions to increase their data movement and replication performance between databases, they create new security risks without the ability to provide true end-to-end data encryption. Retail business and IT technologists don’t have to sacrifice security for performance with innovative solutions like NitroAccelerator. This encryption and compression solution does not use a middleman in providing 256-bit encryption and guaranteed data delivery with high performance across any network. Retailers will continue to find places to secure their customer and store data while expanding rapidly. NitroAccelerator is one of the enablers that retailers need in order to meet consumer experience requirements and to be a good stewards of data.
All of these trends show that retailers in particular are ripe for technology that securely accelerates data movement to support their expansion and growth requirements. How will the data captured by the barista who makes lattes in the Xi’an, China store ultimately be shared with global operations? From Mom and Pop stores to global brands, the onus is on the retailer to move data quickly and securely to delight consumers and keep them coming back for more.
If you thought your favorite retailer or coffee shop was already on every corner, think again. According to About Money, in 2014, retailers continued their massive expansion with plans for more than 10,000 new store openings in the United States and in geographies including Japan, Europe, the Middle East, China and other major regions. Leading the charge is 7-11, Starbucks, Subway, Tim Hortons, General Dollar, H&M and Nordstrom among many others planning openings across geographies. While some retailers shuttered stores in the face of ecommerce, the outlook is positive for several retailers to continue major expansion in 2015.
What does this expansion mean to retailers? One of the challenges is that with the continued growth is the need to improve the efficiency and expediency of sharing store data in order to provide excellent, innovative customer experiences and to manage the business effectively. Whether it is providing inventory visibility and availability, customer analytics, point of sale data and speedy customer service; consumer data that their stores collect are at the center of success for today’s retailer.
For most retailers, data must be collected and uploaded (in real-time or in batch) to regional, and ultimately corporate servers so the retailer can track sales, inventory, and everything else related to their business. Unfortunately, many outlets are located in areas with bandwidth-constrained networks and have to settle for less than real-time replication and movement of store data.
In a demanding, omnichannel retail environment, where the consumer shops online, from a desktop, mobile device or brick and mortar store, it is incumbent upon retailers to provide a real-time experience where data is at the center of compelling consumer experiences. Even in locations where bandwidth is abundant, the difference in the ability to provide inventory or other buyer information performance improvements measured by milliseconds can make or break a sale and impact brand loyalty.
Most retailers work in a hub and spoke model for their customer database. Data from store point of sale and other systems are replicated to regional or headquarter servers for pricing, inventory or sales information. Increasingly, retailers do not have the luxury of batch processing at night. When businesses go global and traverse time zones and commerce is conducted 24×7, there is no concept of “night” when the business is closed.
Some retailers have looked to appliance solutions to speed data movement and replication but there are issues with data delivery guarantees and increased security risks (more for our next post). Retailers are discovering that NitroAccelerator, a compression solution that guarantees data delivery, increases performance by up to 10X without having to increase bandwidth. Find out what role NitroAccelerator can play to improve your business performance around the globe by taking a free 30 day trial.