One of my favorite hobbies is trying out the latest new technologies and services.   I have an Amazon Echo and Google Home (patiently waiting on Cortana from Microsoft).  I ride-share, home-share, and even bike-share. For me, combining my work in digital transformation with retail and other consumer industries is one of the most exciting aspects of working at Cisco.

This weekend, I’ll be attending Retail’s Big Show in New York City – the National Retail Federation (NRF) Show 2017! More than 30,000 attendees from around the world will come together to learn about the technologies and solutions that are helping to redefine the shopping experience.

The holiday season just wrapped up, and results are looking up for retailers this year, with a 16% increase from 2015 in consumer holiday shopping, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers Post-Holiday Shopping Survey (ICSC). The ICSC report also stated that 91% of consumers are still buying at physical stores. Eighty-six percent of Millennials used their mobile devices while inside a store to compare prices, check inventory, look up discounts, and read reviews. Closing the gap and creating a seamless experience between the physical store and the omnichannel shopping experience has never been more important for retailers.

Right now, retail industry is seeing a dramatic shift in consumer shopping behaviors, preferences, and expectations. Today’s biggest concern continues to be how to appeal to and reach the digital consumer. Advancements in technology will continue to enable new business models and services that are relevant to the always-connected digital consumer.

According to eMarketer, US mobile commerce sales will see close to 50% increase year over year in 2016. New and engaging digital capabilities are not only necessary to enhance the overall customer experience, but they can provide great value in driving a retailer’s workforce productivity, new growth opportunities, brand value, and customer insights.

In today’s world, all industries are affected by digital transformation. According to our Digital Vortex research, retail is the third most likely industry to see major disruption. Retailers need to digitize their business in order to keep up with consumer demands, outpace the competition, and ensure they are not disrupted by online-only or omnichannel businesses who are adapting to digital transformation more quickly.

Cisco has the technology, services, and partners to help retailers to digitally transform their business. To see this in action, join us at Booth 1963 to see our Cisco solutions. And, be sure to join Cisco VP Inbar Lasser-Raab on Tuesday, January 17 at NRF, as she hosts Ratnakar Lavu, CTO of Kohl’s, and Denise Taylor, CIO of Westfield. In this one-hour session,  the panel will discuss how digital transformation is helping them achieve significant business outcomes, innovate faster, and engage customers in new ways.

Exhibitor Insights: How Two Global 1000 Retailers are Driving Digital Transformation

Date: Tuesday, January 17

Time: 1:30 – 2:30 pm

Location: Level 1, Hall A, 1A 06

We look forward to meeting you at #NRF17!  Visit our Cisco at NRF website to learn more. Follow us on Twitter: @CiscoRetail

Update (March 16, 2017): Ed was interviewed at NRF 2017 by Deal Crunch. Take a look at the resulting article, “Cisco Helps Retailers Ease Into the Digital Transformation: An In-Store Analytics Fabric Connecting Virtual Beacons, Mobile POS, and Digital Signage” written by Jon McDonald.



Ed Jimenez

Business Transformation Lead

Retail & Hospitality