Blog post

Industry experts’ insight from Retail Technology Show

We caught up with our friends from Zebra Technologies, SML Group, and OneStock to get their learnings from RTS.

  • Topic
    Retail trends

Since Day 1 we’ve been pioneers of game-changing tech and next-gen retail software…and that’s why we love the Retail Technology Show (RTS).

It’s one of the flagship retail tech events and brings together the most forward thinking retailers and leading tech innovators from across Europe. We were there showcasing our solution and giving visitors a sneak peak into the future of retail.

RTS is always a calendar highlight and this year was no different with nearly 10,000 retail professionals coming together at London’s Olympia on April 26 & 27. Over 100 retail trailblazers explored and addressed the hottest topics redefining retail, helping retailers understand what’s needed to navigate the digital transformation that’s sweeping the industry and how to succeed against a backdrop of uncertainty, economic headwinds, and radical consumer behavioral change. 

We got some amazing insights from both the keynote speakers and many of our partners in attendance. Here’s what we learnt at RTS 2023…

From Dean Frew, CTO & SVP RFID Solutions at SML Group Limited

“Retailers that are embracing change with technology are pulling away from their peers in the race to the next level of prosperity. They think about the world differently and this means they innovate, push boundaries, and have the courage to pioneer new ways of meeting customer expectations.

“Retailers also want to see ROI. With so much tech now available throughout the industry, retailers want to know it’s worth the investment yet too few technology vendors talk about ROI and, specifically, the kind of ROI their technology gives retailers”

From Joe Till, Country Manager UK and North Europe at OneStock

“It was great to spend time on our stand at this year’s Retail Technology Show having some fantastic conversations with customers, retailers and partners about their current challenges, omnichannel innovation and the future of retail.

“Key takeaways are based on a mixture of discussions on the stand and listening to some very interesting conference sessions. On Day 1 it was really insightful to hear from Peter Cowgill about his experience of leading retail businesses through periods of uncertainty, and it definitely felt like the retailers we spoke to had a real appetite for understanding more about technologies that could improve operational efficiency, profitability and customer retention in the current cost-of-living crisis.

“It was also good to hear so many people promoting the benefits of composable commerce – having joined the MACH Alliance earlier this month, we were delighted to be able to share our experiences of the work we’re doing with clients who use our MACH-certified technology, and promote the benefits of the MACH Alliance. There was a real feeling of collaboration amongst both the retailers and tech vendors at the Show and great to have so many discussions with both existing and potential partners about their best of breed solutions.

“The desire to balance carbon emissions and cost savings was another key takeaway. It feels like retailers are interested in exploring technologies that can help them be more sustainable, with the British Retail Consortium highlighting how retailers can significantly reduce shipping costs and emissions of stock transfers, deliveries and returns by optimizing their logistics.

“It was also really beneficial to meet with so many retailers and partners in one space to share insights about the industry in this uncertain climate.”

From keynote speaker, Peter Cowgill, former CEO of JD Sports 

“Retailers differentiating themselves from their competitors will be winners despite the current economic climate and ongoing cost-of-living crisis. A number of retailers failed or diminished during the pandemic because they lacked agility, flexibility, recognition, and innovation. Don’t assume that success today means success tomorrow. 

“Success today is great, but enjoy it for a very short space of time because the challenges are for tomorrow. The most dangerous thing to do is to stand still or become complacent about consumers.”

He also highlighted the importance of changing the speed of service and retrieval at tills and in the stockroom – JD Sports introduced strategies like using tablets and smart devices so their store associates could make a sale anywhere in the store and reduce queues.

From Mark Thomson, Retail Industry Director EMEA at Zebra Technologies

“This year there’s been some serious conversations around real projects showing a higher level of focus than previous years. Labor challenges persist and so productivity was high on the agenda as well as training, rewards and devices for all staff.

“Pick from store is driving a number of projects, from a demand for much higher inventory accuracy (particularly on shelf) to picking efficiency.

“There was an understanding that retail is in a challenging place, but with the right tech investment and with tech seen as a true investment rather than cost, strong retailers with focus will thrive.”

In Summary

The common thread tying everything together at RTS was clear; embrace change and move with technology or get left behind. 

Tech is helping retailers: 

  • Meet new and emerging customer behaviors

  • Do more with less

  • Boost productivity

  • Improve employee engagement

  • Streamline retail operations

The best way forward is to embrace a flexible, best-of-breed way of thinking to create systems and processes that are easy to integrate with each other, work for you and deliver on your customer promise.This kind of ‘composable’ approach – built on simplicity, adaptability and open innovation means you can quickly adapt to customer needs and market dynamics.

With a new mindset and approach to retail tech, you can create your own retail ecosystem and deliver the kind retail experience you know your customers want.

Since Day 1 we’ve been pioneers of game-changing tech and next-gen retail software. And we’ve just raised the bar to even greater heights. And now we’re giving you the chance to get an exclusive look into the future of redefined retail and a reimagining of everything a POS is and can be.

If you’re ready to step into the future, then we’d love to hear from you.


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