Consumer Apps as a Tool to Build Customer Loyalty

Michael Abbene, Product Specialist
November 14, 2017

Grocery shoppers have an abundance of choices these days. Not only can they select between stores in their immediate area, but now global online retailers will deliver right to their door. As an independent grocer, you’re in a great position to know your local customers’ needs better than most, but in an age where convenience is a key factor in consumer decision making, you need the tools to show current and new customers that you have the products, promotions and programs they value. And one of the most effective ways to do that is by engaging with them via the medium where they spend so much of their time—their personal smartphone and tablet. 

Recent data shows that 86 percent of time spent on personal mobile phones is spent using apps, compared to only 14 percent using a browser. If you’re relying on your website alone to share deals and offers, customers likely won’t see all your store has to offer. A consumer app is one way to give customers easy access to coupons, loyalty programs, discounts, promotions and more. Through an app, a platform like BRdata Connect can provide customers with useful store information and you with insightful analytical data. 

The app is customizable to your store’s needs with an easily navigable branded homepage and menu, email and push notifications on upcoming deals, coupon clipping abilities, store locator, reward redemption, recipes, weekly ads and more. Plus, through BRdata Connect, BRdata can access and compile user data to provide meaningful consumer insights, helping you tailor your products, offers, service and app functionality to your loyal customers.  

The choices of busy consumers are often guided by convenience. Adding an app to your store’s arsenal can mean the difference for a busy mom who doesn’t have time to physically cut coupons or a young professional looking for an easy dinner recipe and the ingredients to make it. Plus, with the behind-the-scenes data you’ll know which features are truly making a difference in maintaining customer loyalty.  

BRdata Brings Together More than 50 Grocers, Wholesalers and Technology Companies at 10th Annual BRdata World Conference

Michael Abbene, Product Specialist
October 26, 2017

The impact of the Millennial Generation on retail services and technologies, the increasing importance of data and analytics, potential new federal legislation, and other trends shaping the independent grocery market were discussed at the recent BRdata World conference. Grocers also learned about the latest solutions from BRdata and other software companies that are available or being developed to meet grocer’s evolving needs.

Attendees at the technology-focused conference participated in sessions hosted by industry experts and peers on topics such as data and store analytics, e-commerce integration, digital coupon distribution, markdowns, automated ordering, cloud reporting, organic/natural product integration, and more. During the breakout sessions customers showed a strong interest in utilizing BRdata to efficiently manage inventory, DSD, price optimization, computer generated ordering, and AD planning.

New York University professor, John O’Malley, also spoke about the importance to grocers of positioning their business to delight a multi-generational consumer base. During his session he stressed the importance of companies asking themselves: why do we exist as an enterprise, who is our customer, what do they value, how do we measure if we met their expectations or not, and how do we create more customers. The event’s agenda is developed by the BRdata User Group.

Another common theme amongst attendees was that access to data and store analytics is increasingly important to stay competitive while maintaining margins. BRdata’s rapidly growing set of cloud reports and dashboard features allows retailers to stay ahead of the data analytics curve.

The release of the first version of the BRdata Store App later this year was also announced. This first iteration of this application contains Grind Log and Markdown functionality. Future iterations will contain additional store functionality. With this application, users will now be able to create and print markdowns on the fly then instantly switch over to auditing or entering meat grind activities. Additionally, this application enables users to easily stream the BRdata webinars.

Nick Minnick from Quotient (Coupons.com) discussed the targeting of digital coupons based on consumer purchase patterns and store availability. This functionality will be ready to be added to BRdata consumer applications in the next couple months.

“The retail industry, particularly grocery, is rapidly changing. Customers expect services and conveniences that did not exist even two years ago. Retailers must adapt quickly or lose out to competitors,” said John Abbene, President, BRdata. “It’s an exciting time with new technology and analytics that grocers can utilize to enhance, monitor and continually improve the customer experience and the efficiency and effectiveness of their operations. BRdata World serves as a forum for grocers, wholesalers and vendors to share their perspectives and best practices for success in today’s dynamic market.”

BRdata offers an extensive range of back-office software solutions and cloud capabilities at an affordable monthly cost, including:

  • BRdata Cloud: enables grocers to track financials, item movement, basket analysis, loyalty and competitive pricing
  • BRdata Connect: a branded consumer app that allows retailers to engage directly with consumers through a variety of features, such as recipes, targeted deals, store locator and push notifications
  • BRdata Collect: an e-commerce service that allows customers to order groceries online
  • BRdata Back Office: An enterprise back-office solution for wholesalers, retailers and grocery store chains

Attendees heard about the latest features and functionalities from BRdata, as well as other vendor partners including DUMAC (RORC), Retail Technologies, Inc., CipherLab, Millennium Digital Technologies, ShoptoCook, WorldPay, FMS Solutions, Invatron Systems, Lone Peak Labeling Systems, and Seagull Scientific (BarTender).

New Morning Market, a gourmet local, organic food market in Woodbury, Connecticut, was among the independent grocers attending the conference. An IT manager from New Morning Market commented, “I was very encouraged and excited by the new developments made by BRdata and the direction the company is going in.”

“It was very helpful to network with other retailers and share knowledge about how they are utilizing BRdata solutions,” added another attendee. “I have taken a lot of information away from my first BRdata World conference which I hope to implement at our organization.”

Access Reporting Anywhere, Anytime Through the Cloud

Michael Abbene, Product Specialist
October 18, 2017

Staying competitive as an independent grocer in today’s market means you need to act fast in response to trends and consumer expectations. Alternatively, you never want to make a business decision without thinking through the reasons behind it and potential implications. Real-time cloud-based consumer data and store analytics can help you do both by making it easier and more convenient than ever to quickly understand and react to insights related to every aspect of your store.

Through a cloud reporting service, like BRdata Cloud, you can access real-time data and run analysis reports from anywhere you have a browser – at your store, at home or on a business trip, on a desktop, a laptop, a tablet or a mobile phone, truly anywhere. From analyzing the features of your customer loyalty program to reviewing your financials and hourly sales, you can run a plethora of reports, dashboards and subsets to better understand the factors currently impacting your business.

Reports based on data analytics take the guess work out of the promotions, programs and products your store offers as you’re able to track customers’ shopping preferences, habits, spending and more. Plus, full integration with your back-office system ensures that your data is current, accurate and provides meaningful insights, all packaged in an easy-to-understand format. Furthermore, the number of reports and app functionality are rapidly growing. New reports or features are added every two weeks!

A clear understanding of the elements that are making a difference in your store can help you refocus, eliminate what’s not working, and spend more time on what is driving business success. Visit http://brdata.com/cloud/ to learn more about what a cloud-based reporting solution can do for your business.

New Branding Launched

September 29, 2017

After several months of hard work and preparation, BRdata World 2017 has quickly come and gone.  The feedback from the conference was overwhelmingly positive.  We are grateful to everyone who was part of this exciting event.  At the conference, BRdata launched a new logo, website, and video training channel.  Attendees at the technology-focused conference participated in sessions hosted by industry experts and peers on topics such as data and store analytics, e-commerce integration, digital coupon distribution, markdowns, automated ordering, cloud reporting, organic/natural product support, and more.  New York University professor John O’Malley also spoke about the importance to grocers of positioning their business to delight a multi-generational consumer base.

During the conference, Paul Pugh for Associated Food Stores was elected as President for the BRdata User Group board of directors, and new board members were added – Karen Bird from Harmons, Wayne Miller from Mother’s Market, and Ladwina Isaac from Associated Supermarket Group.  BRUG looks forward to Paul’s leadership, in addition to the feedback and insight from our new board members.

As always thank for choosing BRdata for your retail technology needs and for your continued support.

Sincerely,

John Abbene
President
BRdata | johna@brdata.com

BRdata World 2017

July 31, 2017

BRdata World is September 17-20 and less than seven weeks away!  We hope you can join us at this exciting event.  By attending, you will spend three days listening, learning, and connecting with the best in the independent grocery industry.  With over 100 attendees representing several thousand grocery stores, 15 customer case studies, hands-on workshops, and a Tech Pavilion showcasing the latest in cutting-edge technology – BRdata World will fundamentally change the way your organization does business.

Discover how your peers are competing in the continuously changing landscape of grocery retail.  Our case studies focus on cloud reporting, loyalty, e-commerce, mobile apps, automated ordering/receiving, loss prevention, markdowns, marketing, digital coupons, and competitor price capturing.  Education sessions are offered for executives, IT professionals, business analysts, price coordinators, or marketing professionals.  Please visit our website to register or for the latest listing of the sessions, case studies, and networking activities.

As always, thank you for choosing BRdata for your retail technology needs and for your continued support.

Sincerely,

John Abbene
President
BRdata | johna@brdata.com

BRdata E-commerce Platform

June 30, 2017

With the recent announcements in the grocery retail industry, every retailer should be considering implementing an e-commerce platform for customers to shop at their store online.  There are many options to choose from, but the biggest challenge is providing accurate data to your e-commerce website.  Our e-commerce solution, BRdata Collect, solves this difficult problem.

Several retailers have adopted BRdata Collect.  The prevalent reason is gaining peace of mind knowing that your essential item, price, location, inventory, and point of sale data will be seamlessly integrated to your online store.   There is no reason to stress over integrating your data to another third party provider.  You are already maintaining most of the information to quickly launch your brand online in your BRdata database.  In addition to an integrated loyalty system and a consumer app, we also can offer digital manufacturer coupons.  BRdata Collect is a complete end to end solution, provided by the company you know and trust.  You will be assured of a solution that will be enhanced and supported well into the future, as BRdata has been developing retail software since 1979.  Please contact BRdata sales when you are ready to get started with your e-commerce platform.

Now is a good time to register and book your travel if you are planning on attending our next user’s conference.  BRdata World 2017 is September 17-20, at the Melville Marriot, on Long Island.  Please visit our website to register or for the latest listing of the sessionscase studies, and networking activities.

As always, thank you for choosing BRdata for your retail technology needs and for your continued support.

Sincerely,

John Abbene
President
BRdata | johna@brdata.com

Scan Based Trading

May 31, 2017

Our grocery retail customers are more frequently participating in scan based trading with their vendor partners.  With scan based trading, the vendor owns the product in the grocery retailer’s store until it is sold to the consumer, therefore, they are paid based on item movement instead of purchases.  Benefits of this exchange include reduced cost of inventory and reduction in non-sellable products.  BRdata Host or Store can automate sales data transmissions to vendors and the creation of receipts for vendor payment.  The process is most commonly used with perishable items, such as bread and ice cream provided by direct bakery and dairy vendors.  Other common items are newspapers and magazines.  Please contact your BRdata helpdesk if you would like to get started or learn more about this program.

The BRdata Cloud app had several updates during the month of May and has received positive feedback from customers.  Now authorized users can easily access consolidated item movement for their chain or store, with the latest iOS release supporting financial dashboard views.  Retailers are easily obtaining their cloud data from their iPhone, iPads, and Android devices with the BRdata Cloud app.

BRdata World 2017 is rapidly approaching and is only a little more than three months away.  The conference is packed with education, case studies from your peers, and networking activities.  Please visit our website to register or for a listing of the sessions.

As always, thank you for choosing BRdata for your retail technology needs and for your continued support.

Sincerely,

John Abbene
President
BRdata | johna@brdata.com

Production Planning

April 28, 2017

Our newest addition to BRdata Cloud reporting can assist you with sales building and shrink management.  Woods Supermarkets, a twelve store supermarket chain with two c-stores based in Missouri, requested this report to use in their Deli and Bakery departments.  According to Sam Blaiss, Woods’ COO, “the new tool should help us increase sales on our feature items and have significant positive impact on reducing shrink.  We’ll be able to identify the items that are causing the shrink as opposed to hurting sales caused by an associate cutting back on everything to fix shrink.”  The cloud based report projects sales by day based on the last time the item was on sale with an option to add a lift factor if necessary.

Blaiss further explains, “Once high offending shrink items are identified, the tool will forecast the proper production amount by day.  The report has columns to track the amount staled from prior days and how many are left over that are saleable for the current day.  The tool tells how many to build to, the associate would subtract the amount that are still good to sell that day from the build to and you have the amount you need to produce.  The adjustment by item column will allow us to produce a minimum regardless of movement for presentation.  We also have the ability to adjust by lift.”

The BRdata Cloud app was released on both the iOS and Android platforms earlier this month and has been receiving positive feedback.  Now anyone in the organization can easily track item information, including item movement for all stores.  Future updates in May will include a dashboard view on sales and purchases.

As always, thank you for choosing BRdata for your retail technology needs and for your continued support.

Sincerely,

John Abbene
President
BRdata | johna@brdata.com

BRdata Cloud App

March 31, 2017

We’re pleased to announce the release of the BRdata Cloud App.  Now BRdata Cloud retailers can query item sales information for their store or entire chain with an intuitive app.  This release is just the beginning as we envision the BRdata Cloud App replacing the functionality of the traditional Windows handheld store devices.  Retailers are no longer confined to their network, as the potential exists for any information available in BRdata Host or Store databases to be made available on any Apple or Android device.  The app is available today in Google Play for Android and pending release in the App Store for iOS devices.  Current BRdata Cloud users can log into the app with their existing credentials.  We look forward to your feedback and suggestions.

This month we are starting a new user focus group for current and potentials users of our e-commerce platform, BRdata Collect.  E-commerce best practices, features, functionality, and future development will be discussed.  Please email me to attend the commencement meeting on Thursday, April 27th, if you are a current BRdata Collect user or interested in learning more on how your store can quickly compete in today’s online shopping environment.

We are presenting an information and user experience packed session list for BRdata World 2017 to the BRUG Board of Directors on April 13th.  The conference agenda will be posted once approved by your peers on the BRUG board.  The early bird rate ends May 1st, so please register early and save if you plan on attending.

As always, thank you for choosing BRdata for your retail technology needs and for your continued support.

Sincerely,

John Abbene
President
BRdata | johna@brdata.com

Digital Coupons

February 28, 2017

As many retailers and wholesalers continue to entrust their cloud, e-commerce, consumer app, and loyalty needs to BRdata, we are pleased to expand our end to end solution by now offering digital coupons.  Our digital coupons are supplied by Quotient, who delivers personalized digital grocery coupons and targeted media every day from their unmatched shopper data and network of more than 60,000 stores.  Independent grocery retailers can engage their customers, build on their relationships, and create value by providing targeted digital manufacturer coupons in their BRdata engineered branded consumer apps and e-commerce solutions.  Retailers using the RORC point of sale system can offer coupons to their shoppers, who can clip them in the aisles and at the checkout lanes.  Our e-commerce solution, BRdata Collect, will provide these digital coupons for all platforms.  Please contact sales@brdata.com if you are interested in a BRdata e-commerce or app demo.

Also, I’d like to remind you that registration for BRdata World 2017 is open.  We have extended the extra-early bird rate to March 22nd.  Register early and save if you plan on attending.

As always, thank you for choosing BRdata for your retail technology needs and for your continued support.

Sincerely,

John Abbene
President
BRdata | johna@brdata.com