Up the Revolution
You would have had to be camping out in the jungles of Borneo for the past 10 years not to know that we are living in a technology-driven world. In fact, it’s very safe to say that we are now in the midst of a technological revolution. In less than a decade, personal computers have penetrated deeply into our culture, both at home and on the job. The internet is no longer a curiosity utilized by “computer geeks”: it is perhaps the most promising information/communication tool developed since moveable type.
From start-up companies to the largest multinational corporations on earth, beating the competition to the latest hardware and software technology can translate into a wealth of business opportunities. And running a beverage-focused retail operation is no different, as our feature story, “Computing Profits” (page 18), analyzes in detail.
“My sons had to drag me from the Stone Age to the Computer Age,” admits Fred Rosen, the owner of Sam’s Wine Warehouse in Chicago. Now, eight out of his more than 100 employees are fully dedicated to running his computer systems, as well as handling his store’s website, which attracts an average of 5,000 hits per week.
Savvy retailers like Rosen all across the country have wholeheartedly embraced the technological revolution because they know it is good business. Overwhelming evidence shows that computerized systems pay for themselves rather quickly, and that the clear operational efficiencies are only one positive dimension of their profit-making potential.
Up-to-date systems can accomplish a wide range of category management objectives beyond the nuts and bolts of simple ordering and inventory control. Now, retailers can utilize targeted software to acquire a vast quantitative understanding of a store’s relative performance and make more meaningful and timely strategic decisions because of it.
Retailers can analyze the effectiveness of ads they run based upon any number of variables, and then make informed decisions concerning the timing, placement and types of ads that result in the most business. And a retailer’s ability to target his store’s customer base has also been greatly enhanced by the latest sophisticated p-o-s programs.
Beyond this, retailers can now more effectively market their stores, with individual websites being one of the newest methods.
In this case, the old adage, “Knowledge Is Power,” can be more appropriately rephrased as “Knowledge Is Profits.” If you haven’t already, join the revolution. One of the greatest tools you now have for increasing business is as close as the nearest computer keyboard.