financial intelligence in retail

Recently updated on March 8th, 2024 at 04:59 am

Are you walking through the dynamic lanes of multi-location retail, wondering how to stay ahead in the game? Get this: you’re a retail franchise, bustling with potential, yet grappling in the dark about what drives your revenue, what hampers it, and where your business stands in the grand scheme.

Consider the scenario where the top contributors to your revenue are a question mark, and the fluctuations in your costs of goods sold (COGS) as well as operating expenses are a mystery. Gives you the chills, doesn’t it? But what if you could easily decipher the variations across each retail outlet, gaining clarity on your business’s sustainability, and ensuring compliance without the hassle?

This is where the crux lies — the essence of financial intelligence in retail. In the ever-evolving retail industry, seizing improvement opportunities, gauging sustainability, enhancing business rank, and ensuring compliance isn’t just a strategy; it’s the lifeline for your business.

Imagine a fellow retailer, oblivious to the power of insights, overlooking vital data. Their revenue might be slipping through the cracks, costs spiraling out of control, and the sustainability of their business hanging by a thread. Now, picture your retail business equipped with the right intel tools — a comprehensive suite of features delving into improvement opportunities, sustainability index, business ranks, and compliance.

Come along on a journey with us as we unravel the potential of your multi-location retail business. Let’s discuss how financial intelligence, with its robust features, can truly shake things up for retailers looking to stay ahead of the curve. Ready to dive in?

Retail Business Intelligence to Open a Path to Growth

A majority of outperformers make optimum use of financial intelligence to enhance revenue, foster customer loyalty, optimize operations, boost value, and explore new business opportunities. This powerful tool offers a comprehensive suite of features designed to elevate your multi-location retail business. From identifying improvement opportunities and establishing a sustainability index to securing a favorable business rank and ensuring compliance, business intelligence provides the insights you need for informed decision-making. Let’s delve into each dimension and explore how an advanced solution can empower your retail business.

Improvement Opportunity

The improvement opportunity module opens a path to success for multi-location retail franchises that act fast. This feature equips future-focused retailers, like you, with the tools to systematically review and comprehend areas in need of enhancement. By comparing data across various factors, you can make well-informed decisions that drive positive business outcomes.

To streamline the process, the feature allows you to set threshold variables, focusing on key performance parameters crucial for a retail business—Revenue, Cost of Goods Sold (COGS), and Operating Expenses. The Improvement Opportunity console comprises two main sub-modules:

Executive Summary

  • Overview – Provides a holistic view of observations for revenue, COGS, and operating expenses.
  • Top Contributors – Highlights the top five GL accounts contributing significantly to the total revenue.
  • Key Variations – Enables you to identify key variations in GL accounts based on the configured threshold.
  • Concluding Observations – Indicates the percentage-wise increase or decrease in revenue, COGS, or operating expenses compared to specified parameters.

Observations and Recommendations

  • Retailers can set filters (such as month, location, and period) to assess improvement opportunities and operational performance across all retail outlets.
  • Edit the executive summary and observations as per your requirements.
  • Set prior month, year to date, prior year same month, and budget filter for data comparison.
  • Download a detailed Improvement Opportunity report in PDF format, facilitating easy sharing within your organization.

This comprehensive functionality ensures that retail businesses can pinpoint areas of improvement, fostering a data-driven approach to enhance overall operational efficiency.

improvement opportunity

Sustainability Index

The Sustainability Index emerges as a valuable tool within the business intelligence solution, enabling you to gauge the sustainability of your retail business across key performance metrics. This feature provides insights into how efficiently profits are achieved in comparison to a predefined benchmark or set budget as a benchmark, represented as a numerical “score.” At the entity level, the comparison between benchmark and actual performance encompasses the following:

Metrics Evaluated

  • Revenue
  • Gross Profit
  • Net Profit
  • Compliances
  • Trend

Month Selection

With the Month Selection feature, your multi-location retail business gains the power to dive into Sustainability Index performance data for any specific month. Just pick your desired month from the Calendar dropdown, and voila – you’re in control, armed with insights to fuel your strategic decisions!

Self-Breakdown Option

Guess what? The self-breakdown option in the second dropdown filter is your backstage pass to explore performance scores for different instances of the selected dimension (think location/class) set for the entity. It’s like having a secret weapon to uncover detailed insights and turbocharge your understanding of performance dynamics!

Set Budget as Benchmark

Assess actual business performance against the set budget by choosing the budget as a benchmark. The Sustainability Index report is presented in a tabular format. You can delve deeper into the details by viewing the Sustainability Breakdown Report for each individual graph bar, providing a granular understanding of sustainability performance.

This module equips retailers with a comprehensive assessment of their business’s sustainability, empowering them to make informed decisions and strategize for long-term success against established benchmarks and industry trends.

sustainability index

Business Rank

The Business Rank module provides a visual snapshot of performance rankings across diverse locations within an entity or group. Retailers can gauge the relative standings based on parameters like Revenue, Gross Profit ($), Gross Profit (%), Net Profit ($), Net Profit (%), or Overall Rank. Additionally, the ‘Compare With’ feature allows for insightful comparisons at different levels—Entity, Group, Brand, and Industry—resulting in strategic decision-making.

business rank


The Compliance module provides a visual representation of set compliances within an entity, offering a comprehensive view through graphs. You can conveniently access compliance data by selecting either ‘My Compliance’ to view all added compliances or choosing a specific location from the list for detailed insights. The Data Table icon allows you to explore compliance reports in a tabular format. Moreover, the module facilitates customizable notifications, ensuring timely updates on various compliance tasks, including property tax, payroll tax, sales tax, 1099, fees, county tax, withholding tax, environmental and safety compliance, among others. Stay informed through notifications on the mobile app, portal, email, and more.


Your customers await your next move—are you ready to shift them towards you?

Seize the power of financial intelligence in retail to stay ahead. From pinpointing improvement opportunities to gauging sustainability, improving business rank, and ensuring compliance, advanced insights are the key to long-term success in the ever-evolving retail industry. Elevate your multi-location retail business and make informed decisions that help you reach loyal customers.

Published on: 21 December 2023

john bugh author

John Bugh

John Bugh is Chief Revenue Officer for PathQuest, responsible for the strategic direction, planning, vision, growth, and performance of the company’s marketing, branding, and revenue streams.

As a seasoned professional with over 35 years of experience in executive sales, marketing, and operational leadership, John has worked to build high-performing leadership-teams that have a demonstrated track record of accelerating growth, increasing revenue, establishing sustainability, and improving profitability.

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