The theme for NRF 2020: Retail’s Big Show was “bringing the future into focus,” and after attending the event, it’s safe to say that this concept was well-represented across the show floor. With various innovative and intelligent technologies spanning the expo hall, attendees were treated to a sneak peek at how the latest advancements can help them enhance nearly every aspect of their stores both now and for years to come.

At the top of this list of technologies stands the cloud, which is relatively new to the retail industry — but the advantages it can provide are in high demand.


When listening to the pain points and concerns of professionals at the show, we frequently encountered retailers that possessed several on-site servers and storage solutions that are creating issues, compelling  them to evaluate cloud as a viable option.

One of the key qualities of cloud-based services is that the need for hardware and infrastructure within the storefront itself is eliminated. Retailers can easily push their data to the cloud, ensuring minimal maintenance with automatic updates and enhanced data security (the latter of which is critical in a physical sense, as we heard from one retailer who experienced a theft that included the thief stealing their NVR).

Leveraging a cloud-based service in lieu of on-site storage and servers also enables central management and remote monitoring of multiple disparate locations, which is paramount for the retail industry. In some cases, where retail chains are comprised of hundreds or thousands of locations, executives prefer turning to the scalability of the cloud rather than using a depreciating asset.

A second beneficial characteristic of the cloud that we saw commonly discussed at the show is business analytics. Attendees showed interest in how they could both address loss prevention and improve the customer experience with analytics, specifically through customer sentiment analysis, checkout line monitoring and people counting, which provides valuable insight into how many people are in a store at any given time.

Cloud-based services like Arcules’ allow retailers to obtain unprecedented business insights and turn everyday information into valuable data that positively impacts the bottom line. When it comes to mitigating risk, analytics in the cloud can enable loss prevention professionals to set up alerts or notifications when a specific rule is triggered, creating a proactive approach to security.

NRF 2020 was a great example of the incredible transformation that’s taking place in the retail industry. More than ever, retailers desire new ways to achieve their business and security goals as they look to overhaul traditional, older systems — and today’s technology is making innovation a reality. The cloud is emerging as the future of retail, giving executives the opportunity to upgrade to a solution that provides powerful intelligence and protection while improving operations.

Download our eBook and learn how Arcules Integrated Video Surveillance and Access Control Service delivers centralized security for loss prevention, as well as business analytics. With cloud services, retail managers and owners can enhance merchandising, optimize staffing and improve promotions to increase sales.