Google has used the National Retail Federation’s annual conference as a platform to unveil its latest efforts to gain retail cloud customers.
Amazon may be the dominant cloud player, but Microsoft and Google are both working to chip away at that lead. One area, in particular, that Amazon is vulnerable is in the retail market. Many retailers are reluctant to rely on the cloud giant, with whom they often compete with for online sales. Microsoft has made headlines lately with a focus on the retail market, emphasizing partnership with retail customers, rather than competing with them.
Google appears to be taking the same approach, improving their retail-oriented features in the hopes of continuing to be an appealing alternative to Amazon. According to a post on the company’s blog, Google has expanded its Retail Acceleration Program (RAP).
“That’s why we’re excited to expand our Retail Acceleration Program (RAP) to a broader set of customers in 2020. RAP is a services offering that helps retailers optimize their websites, build a unified view of customer data, and drive increased foot traffic. Today, we’re also expanding the availability of Customer Reliability Engineering, a white-glove service that helps retailers plan and execute flawlessly during their peak shopping seasons. Customers such as Kohl’s, Wayfair, and Shopify have already turned to Google Cloud to help them stay worry-free during Black Friday and Cyber Monday.”
Google is also using its position to help retailers provided a unified experience for customers.
“Retail customers are becoming more and more “channel-less” in their shopping. It’s imperative, then, to provide a consistent experience for customers as they move between channels in their shopping journeys. Our Google Cloud API Management for Retail solution, powered by Apigee, allows retailers to easily integrate the systems that power different sales channels, providing a more unified shopping experience for customers.
“Retailers struggle with the real estate that bulky computer servers take up in their stock rooms, and also face challenges in centrally managing all of their server applications. Today, we’re piloting Google Cloud Anthos for Retail, which helps retailers streamline and modernize their store operations. Rolling out more broadly in 2020, Anthos for Retail enables retailers to consistently deploy, configure, and manage applications across their fleet of stores at scale—without sacrificing performance or reliability.”
With Google a distant third among U.S. cloud providers, behind Amazon and Microsoft, it will be interesting to see if the company’s retail efforts yield results.