Our world has witnessed many changes over the past year, from global closures and the issuance of a new and complete list of health precautionary measures, to the emergence of terms such as “social distancing” and “contact tracing cases” that have become commonplace in our daily lives. However, like all other crises that affected humanity, the Coronavirus crisis has created a mixture of challenges and opportunities. This is most evident in the retail sector, which has had to adapt to achieve progress by accelerating the pace of digital transformation, developing unconventional strategies, and focusing more on customer experiences and interacting with them.
Based on its pioneering presence in the field of fashion and luxury home products, REDTAG has been at the forefront of the brands that keep pace with the recent development of the retail sector in the Middle East region, and with the aim of better understanding about the challenges faced by retailers in 2020, we conducted an interview with Mr. David Pidgeon RedTag, Chief Operating Officer.
The year 2020 was a true test of the capabilities of retail companies in all respects. What challenges have you faced and opportunities arising as a result?
There is no doubt that the circumstances we witnessed in the past year required us to make some difficult decisions that involve making major changes in many areas of our work. The entire supply chain has suffered tremendous stress, and our purchasing teams have had to supply packages of goods without traveling to meet with suppliers directly, and our logistics teams have had to deal with large increases in shipping costs, while retail teams have been unable to go to the stores that operate. In which. However, the most important challenge we faced was our inability to interact directly with our customers.
We often hear that RedTag is proud of the customer experiences it has to offer. Can you tell us more about this point? What are the methods that you follow to apply this methodology with your clients?
The loyalty program that we launched under the title RedTag Rewards has achieved amazing successes, as it has more than 14 million members across the Arabian Gulf. This program helped us to better understand our customers, their desires, behaviors and preferences related to shopping. We use this information to customize our customer interaction program to keep pace with the different preferences of customers who shop at our stores.
Over the past few years, we have taken another step, by launching a number of new initiatives in which we look to delight customers, not just interact with them. For example, we have launched a product return policy at any time and from anywhere, without any time limits or inquiries. As we allow customers to return the goods they do not want even six months after purchasing them from any of our stores.
How do you view the emerging trends in fashion and retail in general? What are the most prominent developments that you expect that will occur in the sector during the year 2021?
Customers will continue to raise their level of expectations around the world, as people will expect better services, faster delivery, a more interactive buying environment and seamless shopping experiences. The year 2021 will witness a remarkable development in the level of technologies that will continue to improve customer experiences. Sustainability will also become more important, and subscription-based retail services will be added to the offerings of more retailers. As for products, “modernity” will remain as it has always been a basic criterion for success.
The retail sector will also have to contend with another factor in 2021 which is the increasing pressure of freight and raw material costs.
Could you brief our readers on the future plans of RedTag? And what is the brand currently working on?
We are planning to introduce many new initiatives in most of our fields of work that we will work to launch in the near future, but we prefer to achieve successes before talking about them. We will continue to focus overall on providing exceptional value, deepening interactions with our customers, and enriching their experiences within our stores and across our e-commerce platforms. Based on the remarkable success of our business model in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, we look forward to providing more of our customers in the Arab Gulf region with the opportunity to access our convenient and distinguished services in 2021.