EnsembleIQ's New Tech Index Helps Retailers Choose Solution Providers
CHICAGO — Enhancing customer satisfaction, identifying growth opportunities and reducing operational costs are the top three drivers for innovation investments in retail, according to a new benchmarking platform for suppliers of technology solutions for the retail industry.
The Retail Technology Innovation Index, produced by EIQ Research Solutions and powered by Convenience Store News' parent EnsembleIQ, represents the industry's first algorithm-based, 12-factor, zero-to-100 point index of the retail industry's most innovative technology companies.
This comprehensive assessment helps retailers decide which technology companies to invest their time and effort in to rollout customer and business innovation initiatives.
Updated quarterly, the Index is not a ranking but does provide innovation metrics associated with each company identified, researched and scored across key criteria.
To download the full report, click here.
This first report concludes that there are five key areas to consider when executing a truly connected physical and digital customer experience:
- Usability: Designing a store, web or mobile user interface should be based on scientific design principles and then enhanced with continuous testing, implementing changes from user feedback, insights from the web, and analytics.
- Taxonomy: The trick with e-commerce is to know the customer well and offer the most relevant set of categories across which all content is tagged and managed.
- Performance and Availability: Scale remains key for retailers and something to factor in, particularly during offline and online product launches or seasonal peaks.
- Search: A strong search capability combined with a detailed taxonomy and optimized user experience can help elevate the overall user experience.
- Personalization: Retailers must be able to integrate offline data (point-of-sale and loyalty program data) with online data, and vice versa, to truly customize and target a customer one-on-one.
The launch of the Innovation Index reinforces EnsembleIQ's vision of delivering information, research, news and analytics to retail and consumer packaged goods communities. It will leverage several of the company's existing media and research products and services.
"We are in the midst of a historic shift in perspective that is affecting companies across the world and across industry boundaries," said David Shanker, CEO of EnsembleIQ. "Retailers are embracing technology to improve the customer experience and transform their business operations.
"Our experience tells us that retailers who want to stay relevant need to make a real commitment in technology investments that develop fully connected, engaging customer experiences. Looking beyond simply driving down cost is becoming more important for retailers," he added. "We are delighted to be able to provide our clients with access to this important information through our Innovation Index, thereby enabling them to make better investment decisions and more strategic choices."
The Innovation Index is designed to transparently and objectively measure the performance of more than 450 meticulously selected companies and provide clients with differentiated insight. It scores subjects according to 12 key performance indicators under four overarching pillars: Product, Performance, Ecosystem and Organization.
Only companies with scores across all four pillars are assigned an overall score (the average of the pillar scores) from zero to 100. The top 75 companies with the best overall scores were selected for the Index. The plan is to expand the Index to 100 companies beginning in 2019.
Kiosk Information Systems
TCS (includes DS&S Group)
Toshiba Global Commerce
Tyco Retail Solutions
To learn more about how to leverage the Index (including methodology, fact sheet, etc.), contact Jesse Casselberry, director of Enterprise Solutions, Technology Practice, EnsembleIQ at [email protected] or 609-377-1741.
EnsembleIQ is a premier business intelligence resource that exists to help people and their organizations succeed. It is structured to serve the business-to-business needs of retailers, consumer goods manufacturers, technology vendors, marketing agencies and retail service providers by using its integrated network of media and information resources designed to inform, connect and provide actionable marketplace intelligence.
EnsembleIQ is a portfolio company of RFE Investment Partners, a private equity investor with more than 30 years of experience investing in growth companies in partnership with strong management teams.