The U.S. sporting goods industry sees $63.64 billion in sales, according to Statista, with many strong companies dominating the marketplace. Sporting goods retailers need to adapt to changing conditions to keep up with demand from adjusting inventory, due to seasonal shifts, to making changes if unseasonal weather increases or decreases demand for certain sporting goods.
Legacy point of sales (POS) systems do not provide sporting goods retailers with the features they need to keep up with modern retail demands. A sporting goods web-based POS in the cloud provides key benefits in deployment, business agility, and infrastructure reduction. Retail cloud adoption is increasing rapidly, from $4.2 billion in 2014 to $15.1 billion in 2015, reports Accenture. Sporting goods retailers need to take a hard look at the benefits of cloud-based sporting goods POS systems to keep up with the competition.
A change to the sporting retail POS system disrupts normal business operation during the deployment and training process. These disruptions translate into lower productivity, sales and other issues, so a short deployment process is critical for any new technology. With a cloud-based system, retailers avoid lengthy hardware installation, as they can access this technology from existing computers. The deployment process limits the disruption to daily business operations so the retailer can head straight to training staff on the new system. Without hardware to install, the retailer doesn’t require a large resource drain on its IT staff or consultants.
All retailers adapt to seasonal trends, but sporting goods stores have an even greater need for business agility. A cold front at the wrong time of year can throw off projected sales and inventory requirements. Retail store managers need a flexible system capable of responding to changing customer needs within a few days, not a few weeks. The POS system tracks many metrics from sales in particular categories to the amount of employee hours in a week. Store owners and managers can adjust inventory, staff and warehouse distribution to make fast changes to maximize performance and increase customer satisfaction.
Sporting goods retailers require significant resource investment to handle complicated infrastructure. Deployment, maintenance and equipment storage take up valuable time, money and resources. Upgrades to this type of infrastructure may require substantial downtime, hardware investment and IT resources. A cloud-based sporting goods POS system uses the retailer’s existing hardware, reduces the amount of equipment required on site and takes less IT resources to keep running. Retailers often get significant cost savings by switching to the cloud with Cisco reporting that one retailer saved 75 percent on its server-related costs.
Moving to the cloud saves retailers save time and resources, which they can then use to focus on core business issues. They do not have to worry about hardware failure taking the entire system offline, remembering software updates, or needing frequent IT help. The POS vendor handles many of these details, leaving the retailer to do what they do best.
Many retailers have moved to cloud-based technologies or are considering a move in the near future. Legacy systems cannot deliver the experience customers expect and create a competitive disadvantage in the sporting goods marketplace. A sporting goods POS system gives retailers the technology they need to improve business agility, cut infrastructure complexity and costs and focus on growing their business.