The quest for customer focus in the Retail industry has taken on my different facets over the years from the S&H Green Stamps at the general store to the dynamics of proximity beacons of today that will identify a customer based on their handheld device and alert them to specials in the store. Capturing and interacting with the consumer has always been the goal of retails of the modern age. However, with the advancement of technology, this one on one interaction seems to have been lost. How do we get this personal touch back? The answer for me is smarter and more intelligent integrated business applications like Dynamics 365.

These early reward programs like S & H, created to engage the customer and drive brand loyalty, as you needed to fill the green stamp booklets from the known retailer to complete a glass or dish set, at least these were the rewards my grandmother always chased. As the world and technology evolved that personal, one on one customer interaction was lost. Replaced by impersonal websites, apps and algorithms that just looked at your buying history, made suggestions and were very annoying at times.

Microsoft saw the need to make the business applications smart and more personal. They began by creating an entirely new ecosystem of products and services and bringing them together in a customer first digital transformation to change how business applications are viewed and consumed by both the retailer and consumer. Microsoft is bringing the world of analytics and personal shopping together in the new eco-system of Dynamics 365 with Cortana Intelligent analytics and the Modern Point of Sale. Retailers are now able to deploy and interact with the information gathered from the Omni-channel interaction of the consumer.

With the Modern and Cloud Point of Sale, retail service personnel can call up wish lists created by a consumer in the E-commerce channel, review the purchase history of the consumer and even allow for Cortana Intelligence to make product suggests in real time as items are added to the cart. This gives the retailer all of the tools and smart business applications to engage the consumer and build the brand loyalty that has been lost through the advancement over the years. Microsoft is bringing back the empowerment of, not only the consumer but the retailer with Dynamics 365.

The world is in a new and dynamic marketplace, where we have come full circle again and our business applications need to be smarter and dynamically evolving to compete and capture the attention on the consumer as they are bombarded with the choice of social media as indicated in the image below. There are so many distractions and avenues of delivery from YouTube to Facebook and so many in between. How do you harness these channels and pathways of information to get to your customer and once you get to the customer, how do you focus on the needs of that customer?

Dynamics 365: One Resource That Simplifies Business Retail Operations

Microsoft with the Dynamics365 eco-system and Azure capabilities are enabling the retailer to harness all the pieces of the pie to create an integrated Retailing solution, as seen in the next image. This eco-system allows the retail all of the available applications and services, such as social listening to inform the Retail when they are being discussed in the social marketplace, to use marketing to push notification and promotions based on this feedback. These applications and the Modern Point of Sales, which allows a sales associate to have instant access to the customers purchasing trends, history, Loyalty information and wish lists, allowing for instant personalization and one on one customer service. Microsoft is building smart business application and services that are allowing for the digital transformation but with the human touch of customer service.

Dynamics 365: One Resource That Simplifies Business Retail Operations

Having the smarter business applications, that can bind the worlds of analytics and customer service are taking the game to a new height. Microsoft is building that smarter customer-facing application, all the while keeping the human element at the forefront of the Digital transformation revolution. When you can deliver the technology along with keeping the human touch, Microsoft has created a game-changing eco-system of products.

Whatever the nature of your business, AlfaPeople and Dynamics 365 offer multiple advantages. Request a tour of Dynamics 365 capabilities to identify its benefits for achieving a customer-focused solution.

VP of Sales and Marketing at AlfaPeople