Welcome to Internet Retailing’s third annual Procurement Guide. It’s one of our key publications of the year, in which we consider the state of the market within different retail disciplines and look ahead to where these disciplines might be taking the industry. The overall aim is to offer expert help and guidance to those responsible for making investments in business-critical products and services.
That’s particularly crucial this year because of where the retail industry currently sits in the investment cycle. In particular, the journey towards an omnichannel future, where the friction between different channels is somewhere between minimal and, ideally, non-existent continues apace. Companies that want to keep up in this competitive environment have to invest.
However, that’s not the only factor driving investment. Many companies, for example, are due to upgrade or replace PoS systems; there’s an increased interest in product information management stystems and big data; and retailers are redefining the role of the store within the overall company ecosystem. Moreover, retailers that have delayed investments because of the fallout from the 2008 crash are now looking to spend again.
This all makes for a real energy around the retail sector, and I’m proud to say the Procurement Guide reflects this. Under the leadership of our supplement co-editors, Chloe Rigby and Jonathan Wright, it offers a clear picture of an industry undergoing huge changes, a picture that always keeps commercial considerations front and centre.
One thing I should mention is that we’ve changed a few of the sections from last year. Mostly these have been small changes, but we’ve dropped the mobile section entirely. That’s not because we’ve suddenly decided to ignore mobile, it’s that mobile is now so intrinsic to cutting-edge retail that it seems positively old-fashioned to talk about it separately. Of all publications, Internet Retailing should not be siloed…
As ever, sponsors, suppliers and retailers have been generous with their insights – our thanks to you all. Do let us know your thoughts, especially concerning areas you’d like us to include in 2015 or areas of importance to you. Please share your views, ideas and feedback with me at [email protected]
With best wishes
Co-Founder and Editor-in-Chief,