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Why content management systems are key to retail digital transformation

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Discover how Walmart, Whole Foods, Wayfair and other leading retailers are using content management systems (CMS) to streamline operations, create compelling content and build long-term customer relationships. Learn how you can drive your own retail digital transformation with the right CMS platform.

Digital transformation is the process of applying digital technology to an organization's traditional processes and services. The goal is to rethink and reconfigure traditional business systems, incorporating digital technology throughout the enterprise to achieve increased efficiencies, improve the customer experience and meet business goals.

With the increasing popularity of online and mobile shopping, digital transformation has become increasingly important in the retail industry. Retailers interested in digital transformation can enhance operational efficiency, improve the customer experience and drive growth by infusing technology into their operations.

What does digital transformation in retail look like?

Many of the world's leading retail brands have undergone a digital transformation in recent years.

Embracing digital transformation can help retailers meet various goals, such as:

  • Streamlining and automating inventory management
  • Improving customer service
  • Recruiting and retaining workers more effectively
  • Finding new ways to connect with customers
Adobe Experience Manager vs. Brightspot: Brightspot company logo
By Brightspot Staff
February 08, 2018
Learn how a modern CMS and the power of brand storytelling enabled Walmart to transform their corporate communications strategy.
2 Min Read

For many retailers, building stronger connections with customers is one of the essential goals of digital transformation. For example, Walmart, the world's largest retailer, began looking for ways to harness technology to deepen its customer relationships several years ago. They wanted the ability to continuously engage with customers through messaging and stories with authenticity, freshness and relevancy.

The retailer implemented a content management system (CMS) that makes it easy to create and publish stories of the company's various initiatives, such as its culture, diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI), and social and environmental efforts. Rather than publishing simple posts with limited reach, Walmart now uses powerful brand storytelling, connecting with customers online, in-store and through its mobile applications.

Retailers that originally launched in the e-commerce space can also undergo digital transformation, as new technologies offer innovative ways to conduct their operations and connect with their customers. For example, online home goods retailer Wayfair has a global presence and a customer base of more than 22 million shoppers. In 2020, the company transformed its approach to creating, updating and maintaining its content footprint in order to simplify content creation and more easily connect with customers in different geographical areas.

Like Wayfair and Walmart, for many retailers, content plays an important role in an effective digital transformation strategy. And adopting the right content management system is the easiest, most efficient option for creating, publishing and editing content for a retail site. Whether you're posting item descriptions, communicating with customers or building an audience through social media, the right CMS for your retail business can simplify and streamline all these tasks.

How does a CMS help drive digital transformation in retail?

February 23, 2023
Following its acquisition by Amazon, Whole Foods delivered on its brand promise with an engaging content-as-commerce approach built on a new API-powered headless CMS platform.
1 Min Read

In the case of Whole Foods, the company's acquisition by Amazon in 2017 led to a new direction for the brand and its approch to digital storytelling. Post-acquisition, the challenge for Whole Foods was that it now had access to the best e-commerce engine on the planet, but how could they ensure their content maintained a connection and brand identity with home shoppers?

The Austin, Texas-based organic and health-food giant found the answer in Brightspot. On the technology side, extensive use of Brightspot’s application programming interfaces (APIs) and tight integration with its GraphQL framework reassured the team that they could easily move between both its own CMS and its new parent’s technology resources. With a headless implementation in place, Whole Foods' editors and content creators had access to the full suite of publishing capabilities available with their new CMS.

Building a sustainable retail business depends on developing long-term relationships with customers rather than simply selling one-off purchases. One of the most effective methods of building those long-term customer relationships involves telling compelling stories about your organization's products and services, as well as the people and purpose behind your business. Sharing stories and details about your products, services and organization allows customers to get to know you, share your content with others and develop a deeper and more loyal relationship with your company.

Good, consistent content helps you close more sales. But for busy retailers, consistently creating and publishing content may seem overwhelming. That's where a CMS comes in. A content management system allows retailers of any size to post and manage content without the need for coding or any special technical knowledge. A CMS for retail provides software to help you edit, publish and organize many different types of content, including articles, videos, product description pages, promotional banners, pop-ups and marketing emails.

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By Brightspot Staff
October 21, 2020
Creating a seamless customer journey, making every touchpoint and every user experience flawless, is the key to generating recurring sales. From the website to the brick and mortar store to the mobile app, every channel is an opportunity to create memorable, lasting experiences for consumers.
5 Min Read

The right CMS can make it easy to create and publish content on a variety of devices so that it can be accessible for both online and in-store customers. For example, Mattress Firm is a traditional brick-and-mortar retailer that has successfully used content development to expand its digital footprint and provide helpful information and go-to advice for shoppers who prefer to buy online as well as those who prefer to shop in store. A CMS helps retailers like Mattress Firm easily pull together all its different content assets—photos, item descriptions, customer reviews, blog posts—to tell a richer story and drive more sales.

A powerful, yet easy-to-use CMS can be the most effective tool for driving digital transformation that will result in deeper, longer lasting retail customer relationships.

The right CMS platform can boost your retail digital transformation. Talk to us today to find out how Brightspot can help you reach that goal for your e-commerce or retail business.

    About the Author
    Nancy Mann Jackson
    Nancy Jackson has been writing about business and technology since 2001. She has written for technology brands including Oracle, Planview, Codility, Brightspot, Zinnia and Brightly Software. Her work also has appeared in publications including Entrepreneur, Fortune, Forbes and She’s based in Huntsville, Alabama.

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