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Short-Term Demand Forecasting: Taking Demand Sensing to the Next Level with CX Sense

January 2, 2024 | Manju Devadas

Blog / Short-Term Demand Forecasting: Taking Demand Sensing to the Next Level with CX Sense

As we delve into the festive season, many retail leaders are grappling with a harsh reality: the traditional methods of demand forecasting are no longer cutting it. The rapid shift in consumer mindsets, the unpredictability of their journeys, and the sudden market shifts heavily influenced by marketing campaigns on social media are reshaping the retail landscape, especially in micro-segments like fast fashion retailers.

Traditional demand forecasting tools, reliant on stale data, are failing to paint an accurate picture of real-time consumer needs.

This Christmas, the struggle is evident. Retailers, basing their predictions on outdated models or reliant on Excel-based manual decisions, are facing discrepancies in sales expectations versus reality. Inventories are ballooning, sales are not hitting targets, and there’s a growing disconnect between what consumers want and what’s available on shelves.

The Reality Check: Traditional vs. Gen AI-Enabled Near Real-Time Decision Intelligence

Challenges Facing Retailers Time with Traditional Tools Time with CX Sense (Gen AI)

Understanding Rapid Consumer Mindset Shifts

Weeks or Months

Instantly, in Near Real-Time E.g. response to ads

Adapting to Sudden Market Changes

Often Too Late

Swiftly, Within Days

Keeping Up with Social Media Trends Impacting Demand

Delayed Reaction

Immediate Insights

Balancing Inventory with Real Demand

Seasonal Analysis

Ongoing, Dynamic Adjustment

Dealing with Post-Christmas Inventory Surplus

Long-Term Strategies

Immediate Remedial Actions

Innovating to Stay Ahead of Market Trends

Slow and Cumbersome

Fast and Agile

A Turning Point for Retailers

Christmas is over, and the next significant event on the horizon could be Valentine’s Day. For retailers, the difference between a successful season and a missed opportunity could hinge on one critical decision: investing in a demand-sensing platform like CX Sense. This Gen AI-enabled platform doesn’t just provide data; it offers actionable insights that are crucial for making informed, timely decisions in an ever-changing market.

Introducing CX Sense: Revolutionizing Demand Sensing in Retail

CX Sense is not just another demand forecasting tool; it’s a comprehensive demand sensing platform that revolutionizes how retailers understand and respond to market dynamics

It achieves this by integrating ERP data from systems like SAP and Oracle EBS with CRM data from platforms such as Salesforce. More importantly, it enriches this data with over 250 external signals, including insights from Google Adtech and Google Trends.

Key Benefits of CX Sense:

  • 360-Degree Customer Insight: By combining internal ERP and CRM data with external market signals, CX Sense offers a complete view of customer behavior and preferences.
  • Aligning Forecasts with Market Realities: With access to a broad range of external signals, CX Sense bridges the gap between forecasted sales and actual market demand.
  • Agile Demand Planning: This integration of diverse data sources enables demand planning teams to make quick, informed decisions based on real-time market insights.
  • Proactive Market Adaptation: Stay ahead of shifting trends and consumer demands with timely and relevant data analysis.

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CX Sense in Action: The Case of ACME Corp

CX Sense

Last Valentine’s Day, ACME Corp faced low sales volumes in their assorted cookies category. However, this year, with CX Sense, the story is different. The platform’s ability to pick up on Google Trends and Adtech data, among other external signals, has provided ACME Corp with early indicators of rising consumer interest in gourmet cookie assortments. This data enables their demand planning team to adjust forecasts accurately, ensuring they meet the surge in demand without overstocking.

ACME Corp’s Valentine’s Day Cookie Strategy: Last Year vs. This Year with CX Sense

  Last Year (Traditional Methods) with SAP IBP This Year with SAP IBP + CX Sense
Data for Product Assortment Relied on last year’s sales data for assorted cookie selection Utilized real-time Google Trends data for popular cookie flavors
Demand Forecast Generic forecast based on historical patterns Advanced sensing of real-time shifts in cookie preferences
Inventory Decisions Ordered equal quantities of all cookie varieties Adjusted orders based on trending flavors and reduced others
Marketing and Promotions Standard advertising without customization Targeted promotions for trending cookie types identified by CX Sense
Supply Chain Response Fixed supply chain strategy Agile response to market demands for specific cookie types aligned with your Salesforce CRM trends
Sales Performance Inconsistent with market demand Aligned with current consumer interest, leading to better sales. Correlating your trends with opportunities.

By embracing CX Sense, ACME Corp is now positioned to respond effectively to real-time market demands, aligning their production and inventory with actual consumer needs, and setting a new standard in retail responsiveness and efficiency.

Immediate Benefits of CX Sense: Quantifying the Impact

Benefits of CX

With our experience in successfully implementing demand sensing solutions for companies such as Levi’s, California Design Den, and Tacori, we can provide a precise estimate of the value and impact offered by a platform like CXSense.

  1. Implementation of CX Sense can boost forecast accuracy by 10-20% within a short span of 4 weeks, leading to a more effective inventory management.
  2. With enhanced forecasting, retailers can see a reduction in overstock by up to 20% and stockouts by as much as 15%, optimizing inventory levels and minimizing wasted resources.
  3. Accurate forecasting can lead to a potential increase in revenue by up to 10%, as well as improve customer retention rates Better demand prediction can lead to an estimated 5-10% reduction in operational costs related to inventory management, contributing to a healthier bottom line.

Why Do Demand Planners Love CX Sense Over Traditional Software and in Some Cases Over Spreadsheets? 

CX Sense is your Decisions Intelligence Platform with spreadsheet reimagined – only quicker, smarter, and more insightful. By infusing external datasets with AI and scalable decision intelligence, it revolutionizes the way planners operate. Here’s why planners excel with CX Sense:

  • Get Access to 250+ External Signals: Dive into a world of insights with over 250 external data sources. We bring the external datasets to you.
  • Stay Loyal to Your Spreadsheets: No need to leave your comfort zone. CX Sense works alongside your ERP, filling in the gaps right where you are. We connect data via connected sheets and google sheets so that your centralized data is available for your pivot table analysis as well.
  • Customize and Control the Data Models: It’s all about your needs. Tweak, adjust, and stay in charge with our clear ‘Glassbox’ approach.
  • Collaborate and Explore: Work together easily, just like you do with spreadsheets. It’s that simple and user-friendly.
  • See Results in Just 4 Weeks: No long waits. We deliver fast, tangible results, making your demand planning more effective in no time.
  • Talk to Your Data with Gen AI: Ask your planning questions out loud. “What will the demand be next quarter?” Get your answers instantly, no coding needed.
  • Stay Connected With the Entire Supply Chain: With Pluto7, demand sensing is just the start. Seamlessly connect with Planning in a Box for inventory optimization and Konnect Manufacturing to boost manufacturing efficiency. It’s all integrated into one cohesive ecosystem.

Become a Demand Sensing Jedi in 2024

2023 might have been a year of guesswork and hunches, but 2024 is all about making smart, data-driven decisions. With CX Sense, step into a new era of understanding your customers better and elevating your service levels. Don’t just forecast demand; anticipate and shape it with precision.

Join us at our Gen AI Bootcamp. Here, we’ll dive into your unique challenges and uncover how to supercharge your demand forecasting. In just 4 weeks, we’ll transform your approach, equipping you with the tools and know-how to make 2024 the year you become a true Demand Sensing Jedi.


Manju Devadas is the Founder and CEO of Pluto7, bringing 20+ years of experience in predictive analytics for Supply Chain, Retail and Manufacturing. With expertise in AI, Deep Learning, and Machine Learning, he has been instrumental in improving efficiency and strategic growth across industries.

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