TESSCO is kicking off its annual TESSCO One Conference in Nashville this week, and the agenda is stacked to tackle a variety of issues important to carriers, vendors, and suppliers.
The conference will feature a number of tracks with different focuses over its two-day span, covering topics like distributed antenna systems (DAS), base stations, backhaul, critical communications, WiFi, and IoT. The event will also look head on at issues in one other key area: Retail.
According to TESSCO’s Mobility Group Vice President Liz Robinson, the conference has a lot to cover in this rapidly changing space.
Robinson noted that while handsets used to be just about voice communications, they’ve rapidly shifted to become our all-in-one resource for communication, entertainment, reference, health, and general connectivity. And the show floor will reflect this, she said, with displays highlighting more sophisticated applications and products.
But Robinson said the speaker track will hone in on some of the larger issues in the retail space, including an explosion of interest in power (that is, wireless charging and portable power), omnichannel sales, and using data to drive better inventory decisions.
“Part of what TESSCO One is designed to do is provide through leadership around these new areas, to look more broadly from a though leadership standpoint at what are the implications, and, since we’re a business-to-business organization, what are new areas for people to invest in, to partner in in order to expand their own business success,” Robinson said.
Speakers from both TESSCO and iQmetrix will take on the importance of omnichannel solutions on Tuesday, April 4 at 3:15 p.m., explaining why they’re important in the world of increasing consumer self-sufficiency.
Robinson observed that instead of walking in a store and relying on a salesperson as in the past, customers now have access to a plethora of information when trying to make device and accessory decisions. Omnichannel channel solutions not only help retailers recapture that interaction, but can use data from those sales to help retailers make better inventory decisions.
“It’s about reducing one of the biggest challenges retailers have, especially with the number of new devices that come out, in capital investment in inventory,” Robinson said. “The fact that the product goes obsolete so rapidly that if you guess wrong you really can make a huge mistake on inventory … But then (if you carry less inventory) you limit the choice for consumers and we’re seeing the trend of consumers buying more and more online. So how do you take this consumer trend … how do you take advantage of that as a retailer with your own value add to bring them in?”
TESSCO, she said, will be showcasing its own omnichannel solution – an in-store kiosk that offers customers recommendations, allows them to order, and sends the orders directly to TESSCO’s warehouse for fulfillment. That solution, she said, allows retailers to carry less superfluous inventory and can offer them better data on what items they should keep in stock to capture impulse purchases.
And that ties into the topic of another session in TESSCO’s retail track: using technology to increase sales. That will be addressed by speakers from iQmetrix on April 4.
“That’s the other trend – you don’t want to guess, you need to use the data of actually what your customers are doing in order to help drive better inventory decisions, whether you put them on peg or use this omnichannel solution,” she added. “Big data and analytics are really driving smart retailers not only from a productivity standpoint but also a profitability standpoint because you’re putting the investment in a spot where the inventory is really moving.”
The TESSCO One Conference will be held this week, April 4-5 in Nashville. Stay tuned as Wireless Week delivers you coverage live from the show floor!