Thursday, April 9, 2009

Retail of Developing Countries to witness Revamping

The retail stores in developing countries were essentially dominated by the unorganized sector or traditional stores. These stores were run by families, being primarily food based or 'corner grocer'. Since global retail touched the sky, Shopping in developing countries started witnessing a revolution with the change in the consumer buying behavior and the whole format of retail. Now, the progression of organized retail in developing countries can be seen crystal clear through multi-stored malls, huge shopping centers, and sprawling complexes. 

The retail sector in these countries is witnessing a huge revamping exercise as traditional markets make way for new formats such as department stores, hypermarkets, supermarkets and specialty stores. The findings reveal that due to the supply crunch in the developing markets, both the organized and the unorganized players can comfortably exist and get their share of pie on the basis of competitiveness. Ironically, in the country of more than a billion people, the Govt. is more concerned to restrict the entry of the new players than to provide some incentives to the domestic stores in the form of micro-credit schemes and alike. Thought retailers now want to play the safe game, yet the rising cost of the real estate coupled with low conversion ratio has put a hole in the pockets of the retailers.

retail store

Today, retailers have already increased their IT spending, allocating almost half of this increase to application software with a particular focus on tools that facilitate multi channel customer relationships, point of sales systems, strategic merchandising and supply chain management. Needless to say, if consumers embrace modern retail formats, technology plays an important role to enhance the experience of shoppers as well as retailers 

Developed retailers have already experimented with blue casting, self-service kiosks, SMS based interactions, digital signage and self-checkout counters. The future needs are converging as retailers from developing countries too are striving to create technology led supply chain efficiency, optimizing revenue opportunities and customer intimacy. 

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