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Retail Virtualization: Upgrading Brick & Mortar with IT

by Samantha Kalany

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

Retailers, especially Brick and Mortar, physical stores are always searching for a means of delivering cutting edge strategies. What allows them to stick out amongst the crowds. Just look at all of the other applications that have already been implemented in shops, such as AI, IoT, and so many more that have been working to maintain and autocorrect business operations, security, back office management, inventory tracking, and more. Successful IT management and Virtualization are essential for managing any application without the need for a physical IT team operating onsite.

Challenges Stacked Against Retail

Typically there is a very limited number of staffed employees on hand, and they even possess a very small budget for investments. POS systems are constantly collecting data on customers’ transactions, digital signage statistics, and other in-store ordering devices to reduce customer wait times, as a whole. To fully utilize the valuable insights that the device gathers from systems, can provide data that must be processed and analyzed locally.

Organizations require real-time data processing, and cloud storage and corporate data centers are often too expensive. That being said, unfortunately consumers don’t want to place their trust in a company that’s failed them in customer service before. Consequences such as down-time or lost information is serious in any retail environment. Device glitches can result in lost sales, and likely even lost customers in the long run.

Virtualization Stays Ahead of the Game

Virtualization allows retailers to run and maintain multiple virtual services using only one or two physical servers at a time.This helps to save the company time, space, and energy. Given the obvious budget constraints and other regulated mandates, scalable virtual solutions help CIOs and other managers to remain flexible in deploying new business strategies and future tasks.

With the rise in edge computing (in relation to AI & IoT) taking place, edge computing actually shortens the distance that data must travel between points A and B. Virtual solutions continue improving within every device that is connected to the internet. Websites will load faster; POS systems won’t glitch out; Electronic devices will perform better. The list could go on forever. Edge brings on a sense of simplicity. These solutions will engage and enable IT generalists to troubleshoot and resolve any issue that may come up. This is a big change, in comparison to other hardware-oriented tactics that require one or more IT specialists to fix onsite.

Virtualization is a Game-Changer

Digital Signage can and will improve customer satisfaction drastically. VirtualizationOn the retailers’ side of things, they would be able to modify sales offerings in a quick and efficient manner at all times. For companies who have deployed virtual solutions already, IT Managers would simple need to secure a new virtual server to support any additional digital signage. Virtualization customers have been able to roll out several new initiatives to more than 50 store location per day, simplifying things for everyone, everywhere.

A huge benefit is the potential for cost-savings, because once the infrastructure is in place, the changes are simple and the upgrades can be made for little to no cost. As the digital transformation surges forward, retailers would need to create a foundation that is flexible, affordable, and doesn’t have to depend on numerous staff members. Virtualization will help retailers incorporate a virtualized storage system for organizational gains, back-of-office logistics support, inventory management, and store associate labor assistance. Virtualization is simplifying tasks for retailers all across the country, who manage technology solutions.

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