Much of the benefits of digital transformations disrupting many industries in Nigeria today may not be seen immediately and digital natives could be the real beneficiaries.
A new study released by Ernst & Young (EY) suggest that as much as 60 million of this demographic in Nigeria are more willing to try and adopt new market innovations than the rest of the population.
Digital natives refers a person born or brought up during the age of digital technology and so similar with computers and the internet from an early age. EY’s Digital in Consumer Products & Retail (CPR) report says the digital natives fall among the 13 to 35 age bracket.
The report defines “digital” as a continuous form of disruption to existing (or new) business models, products, services or experiences, enabled by data and technology across the enterprise.
Given their nature of discontentment with almost everything, over 60 percent of digital natives focus more on life experience than consumer products. In other words, loyalty does not come easy with them.
Companies that will tap and perhaps dictate the market for what EY describes as the “Next Gen” of consumers must leverage digital trends such as social media, cloud, mobile, omni channel, big data analytics, API economy, blockchain, internet of things, virtual and augmented reality, 3D printing and cyber.
Omni Channel which provides a seamless and consistent shopping experience across different channels and devices is seen as representing the largest opportunity for CPR.
Omni Channel as a strategy recognises the opportunities of offline and online models. Inasmuch as the digital transformation has seen billion of consumers move online for convenience, a significant number of transactions still take place offline. EY’s report showed that 93 percent of revenues are via bricks and mortar stores today. Although the number may drop to 85 percent in five years, 74 percent respondents are hopeful store-based sales will continue to dominate in developed markets in the next five years.
Nevertheless, the future still belongs to online channels with 88 percent of those who responded to EY’s survey saying they can no longer rely solely on traditional sales channels to drive growth.
Robotics process automation (RPA) is another trend that could prove pivotal for every business, particularly where it concerns cost optimisation and operational efficiencies. An estimated 85 percent of a typical firm’s over 900 processes can be automated.
To maximise the potential of digital, EY says implementation must be tailored towards solving a real problem.
Focus for digital adoption should be about using innovative technologies to improve the experience of the end customer. It enhances the ability of an organisation to drive collaboration and provides employees with the required tools to succeed. Digital should aim to eat into traditional share of the market as well as create new revenue streams.
Finally, operational efficiency is one of the key objectives of digital by eliminating traditional overheads and costs. BD.