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Three Ways 7-Eleven Is Optimizing Its Retail Analytics With Alteryx

Throughout the pandemic, 7-Eleven has used Alteryx to make data-driven decisions.

Technology   |   Gib Bassett   |   Sep 20, 2022

Retail companies have had their fair share of difficulties throughout the pandemic as digital channels have exploded in popularity. Understanding the effect of promotions on in-app purchases and deliveries has become a priority for many retailers, especially with growing pressure to compete with giants like Amazon and Walmart.


In a recent webinar, Srikanth Nayani, senior director of business analysis at 7-Eleven, shared a few ways he and his team are using Alteryx Analytics Automation to optimize their retail analytics and scale data-driven decisions across the business.



A/B Testing for Digital Promotions


7-Eleven spends hundreds of millions of dollars on promotions every year, so it’s critical that it understands which promotions work and ensures it isn’t discounting sales unnecessarily. Using the A/B testing feature in Alteryx, Nayani and his team are able to measure lift for their digital and in-store promotions with just one click.


Testing the effectiveness of promotions on digital platforms is fairly straightforward for his team: randomly stratify users into control groups, control who’s offered promotions, then calculate the lift. However, things get trickier when it comes to store-front promotions, especially post-pandemic. Every effective A/B test requires a control group. After the pandemic, it became difficult to find control groups: Most stores were hard-pressed for sales, so they couldn’t afford to not offer promotions.



“Using the Alteryx A/B Testing Tool, we have come as close as possible [for store-front promotions] to the segmentation that’s possible in a digital world.”

— Srikanth Nayani, Senior Director of Business Analysis, 7-Eleven



However, with the A/B Testing Tool in Alteryx, Nayani and his team could determine exactly which factors caused promotions to succeed. They were able to cluster similar stores together to create effective control groups and could predict which promotions would work better at different stores, delivering customized promotions at the store level.



Leveraging AI for Predictive Insights


When it comes to hiring analysts for his team, Nayani values business acumen over everything else. Software can always be taught, but identifying the right business problem is critical for effective analysis. That’s why Nayani and his team see so much value from Alteryx Intelligence Suite, a solution that works on top of Alteryx Designer to give users the ability to uncover predictive insights with unstructured, structured, or semi-structured data.


Once Nayani and his team have isolated a business problem and picked a target variable (like cost optimization), they can feed all kinds of seemingly unrelated data points into Alteryx Intelligence Suite. Intelligence Suite runs the data through several machine learning algorithms and then pinpoints the most significant features that predict a target variable. Because Intelligence Suite doesn’t require any coding, business analysts on Nayani’s team can leverage this AI solution with just one click and receive insights in minutes.



Scaling Reports to the Store Level


Nayani and his team take advantage of the scalability of Alteryx by publishing end-to-end workflows on Alteryx Server, a secure and scalable server-based product for scheduling, sharing, and running analytic apps and models. With just one workflow that Nayani’s team built, field analysts can run an on-demand report that they can then send directly to store owners. The workflow handles everything, from building the data to creating a PDF.



“One of the things I like about Altery is you automate all the way from building the data to a PowerPoint presentation or a PDF to an email.”

— Srikanth Nayani, Senior Director of Business Analysis, 7-Eleven



Store owners can easily see things like how much money they made through delivery or digital. There are no complex excel sheets and no custom, time-consuming analytics — just one automated process that tells store owners everything they need to know. This kind of automation has been a huge value-add for 7-Eleven and has helped scale data-driven decisions throughout the business.


Ready to optimize your retail analytics?


Watch the webinar with 7-Eleven on demand.