SAP CAR for Retail Landscape

Even before COVID-19, the retail business had undergone significant transformations. Consumers can now buy whenever and wherever they choose, thanks to technological advances that make it simple to compare products and prices across merchants and channels. SAP CAR (Customer Activity Repository) has been one of the most appealing solutions we have offered retailers over the last five years. As SAP Digital Business Services, we are glad to advise customers on how to use CAR’s capabilities to improve their businesses. The CAR is an innovation that may serve various functions, and this blog discusses some key building elements that most retailers are interested in.

Retailers who leverage their data successfully to give precise omnichannel execution support and extract innovative and valuable insights will be better positioned to incentivize and retain a more loyal customer base. SAP’s Customer Activity Repository (SAP CAR) is the cornerstone for omnichannel support, allowing retailers to be more consumer-centric.

What Role Soes SAP CAR Play In The Retail Landscape? 

SAP CAR began as a substitute for POS Data Management (POS DM), SAP’s sales audit solution with minimal analytics capabilities. Although SAP CAR’s initial use cases were primarily limited to sales audit, as the technology matured, more and more use cases were added, including omnichannel support and a slew of additional execution and planning applications, including omnichannel inventory availability, retail planning, assortment management, allocation management, store replenishment, and promotional management.

Today, SAP CAR is the foundation for integrating transactional sales data, which is frequently scattered across numerous applications and formats to support omnichannel sales. SAP CAR transfers sales data from stores and Ecomm platforms to SAP CAR using SAP HANA’s real-time computing power. It has several common capabilities built-in for effective business and operational activities. Using CAR for real-time inventory queries from various omnichannel platforms enables retailers to execute orders knowing exactly how much and where inventory is available, allowing them to keep pleased consumers returning.

Order orchestration enhances CAR and helps keep the overall SAP environment streamlined while saving operational costs with fewer systems to support because CAP enables Available to Promise (ATP) capabilities.

What Is The Significance Of SAP CAR For Retailers Today? 

POS DM needed some help in terms of omnichannel support and inventory analytics. It could not handle omnichannel sales and lacked the planning and execution capabilities required to revolutionize how merchants operate in today’s fast-changing omnichannel environment.

SAP CAR addresses these constraints by giving near-real-time access to transaction-level omnichannel sales data and immediate analysis and reporting at the most granular level (TLOG) for POS and individual sales transactions from other channels.

With SAP CAR, new data is accessible for reporting immediately after the transaction. Aside from sales auditing, retailers can utilize SAP CAR to evaluate the current inventory status of a specific product across the chain to facilitate real-time inventory availability inquiries and assess sales success and promotion efficacy.

Key Advantages of SAP CAR for Retailers 

1.Increased revenue 

Gain meaningful business visibility into all fulfillment locations’ inventory and a picture of consumer transactional history and demand across channels.

2.Reduced inventory load and write-offs 

Reduce inventory, markdowns, and waste with continuous planning that includes everything from customer-centric assortments to intelligent allocation and product replenishment.

  1. Enhanced customer service

Allow for effortless omnichannel commerce by providing accurate inventory and pricing information and appropriately customized offers at all customer touchpoints.

Key Modules In SAP CAR 

Planning applications in the SAP CAR solution simulate various digital situations like merchandise planning, assortment planning, allocation management, etc. However, two essential and critical components are required for using these planning applications: Omni-channel Inventory Visibility and Unified Demand Forecast.

Planning applications in the SAP CAR solution simulate various digital situations like merchandise planning, assortment planning, allocation management, etc. However, two essential and critical components are required for using these planning applications: Omni-channel Inventory Visibility and Unified Demand Forecast.

Retailers benefit from accurate and real-time stock positioning thanks to Omni-channel Inventory Visibility. This is the foundation for all omnichannel inventory inquiries and order orchestration needs.

The Unified Demand Forecast provides merchants with more accurate real-time sales projections across all channels. This provides solid support for any planning applications built on the CAR.

The combination of Omni-channel Inventory Visibility and Unified Demand Forecasting broadens the initial sales audit basis, allowing SAP CAR to be used by all retail planning tools, resulting in better inventory management and cheaper inventory expenses.

Extended Applications and SAP CAR 

  1. Increasing the value of the SAP Customer Activity Repository (CAR)  

The SAP Customer Activity Repository (CAR) includes critical and extensive features to assist a retailer’s omnichannel execution and planning needs. However, there are two areas where you may increase the business value of SAP CAR through improved functionality and user experience.

  1. Store Reconciliation 

Store Reconciliation increases auditors’ overall management of the sales audit balancing process for stores rather than delving deeply into the conventional CAR interface. We will help you develop a new, Fiori-based front-end to the CAR POS workstation that will be far more user-friendly than the present CAR user interface. Sales auditors may now review the front end to ensure everything is balanced and dig down directly to the same problematic transactions in the standard UI to manage any out-of-balance concerns.

The Advantages of Store Reconciliation 

  • Integration with SAP CAR
  • Flexibility in defining the types of transaction and payment sources, as well as financial transactions to be reconciled
  • Faster and more accurate reconciling
  • Increased sales auditor productivity allows more time to be spent on higher-value duties.

Payment Reconciliation 

Payment Reconciliation enables businesses to manage incoming payment gateway data streams and perform detailed transaction reconciliation with sales transactions. This capability is not currently available in SAP or CAR. This allows the shop to manage its sales and tender reconciliations within the CAR solution.

Payment Reconciliation’s Key Advantages  

  • Add-On Integrated with SAP’s Customer Activity Repository (CAR)
  • Costs connected with third-party reconciliation processors are reduced.
  • Payment reconciliation is completed more quickly and with greater accuracy.
  • Increased employee productivity allows for more time to be spent on higher-value tasks.
  • Drilling down to specific out-of-balance transactions

Popular CAR Analytics Use Cases 

Affinity/Market Basket Analysis: Analyzing how products are purchased together to understand client purchasing trends.

Optimizing Assortment: Insights on assortment gaps (inside and across items), underperforming products, and an unmet customer wants.

The foundation for assortment planning, periodic evaluation, and continuing assortment optimization and development.

Loss Mitigation: Systematic insights that show loss trends and patterns, as well as procedures, goods, vendors, and associates that cause significant losses.

Price Optimization Method: A comprehensive system that recommends appropriate regular rates using pricing techniques, rules, and statistical modeling.


Please get in touch with our experts to learn more about how VIZIO helps retailers harness real-time information to enhance sales, build customer loyalty, and create a consistent customer experience across all channels.