Getting Access and Identity Right in Retail

The retail marketplace is transforming rapidly. Customers’ use of digital retail channels continues to surge, along with expectations for personalized shopping experiences and brand interactions. According to Gartner, more than two-thirds of marketers say their companies compete mostly on the basis of customer experience. To keep pace, retailers need a modern, digital customer experience that secures and supports all touchpoints of the customer journey, regardless of channel.

In retail, the standard is now effortless, relevant, and safe interaction— whenever your customers demand it, wherever they are, on whatever devices they choose. This means giving them a consistent customer experience in store and via web, mobile, call center, and all other channels. Customer identity and access management (CIAM) solutions can help you provide a convenient online experience—including secure, frictionless registration and checkout. Let’s look at how Okta has helped three customers deliver:

  • Faster time to innovation and value
  • Elevated user experiences
  • Increased access security

Faster time to innovation and value for Albertsons

IT teams are keenly aware of the difficulty of building, securing, and maintaining homegrown identity and access management solutions. Rather than sacrifice features and functionality, app developers are increasingly offloading identity management to third-party CIAM providers. This approach speeds innovation and reduces total cost of ownership (TCO), among other benefits.

With more than 20 banner brands across 2,300 stores, Albertsons is the go-to grocer for 30 million customers every week. The company needed to modernize its IT infrastructure to give shoppers what they were looking for—a seamless experience whether they were shopping in store, online, or somewhere in between. A homegrown identity solution required heavy maintenance and didn’t provide a consolidated view of each shopper. The company chose to focus on what it does best—selling groceries—and selected Okta’s customer identity products to improve the e-commerce experience. Albertsons now enjoys a stronger security posture, more control over access requests, added scalability, and a lower TCO. These benefits, along with enhanced analytic capabilities, allow the grocer to provide shoppers with a customized grocery experience that includes more targeted offers.

As one of the US’s largest grocery retailers, we needed a solution that could scale with us. We found it in Okta Identity Cloud, now an important part of our customers’ digital experience with Albertsons.

Ramiya Iyer
GVP of IT, Digital and Marketing, Albertsons

Encouraging fan engagement with Major League Baseball

Intelligent retailing starts with knowing your customers. And that requires a consolidated omni-channel view of customer identity, preferences, and history across all interactions and transactions. With this data, companies can design new products or market offers that speak to each customer’s wants, needs, and lifestyles. The right CIAM solution offers customers a seamless, personalized experience everywhere they engage with your brand, reducing acquisition and retention costs and maximizing revenue.

No longer restricted to ballparks and television, Major League Baseball (MLB) fans are engaging with baseball through mobile devices, livestreaming, and ballpark apps. Wanting to encourage fans to engage more frequently and conveniently through its digital offerings, MLB turned to Okta to help modernize its consumer platform and offer a streamlined, frictionless omni-channel experience. Okta now provides authentication and authorization for MLB’s customer-facing websites and mobile apps, where fans buy tickets and stream live and recorded content. MLB gets valuable insights into customers’ engagement behaviors. And the organization can focus on growing its business and producing revenue-driving content, rather than spending resources on homegrown identity solutions.

When you come to us as a fan, you’re seeing MLB, but it’s Okta bringing all of the platforms together. As a fan, what’s better than seamlessly moving between modes without having to think about identity? It’s win-win, powered by Okta behind the scenes.

Neil Boland
Chief Information Security Officer, Major League Baseball

Securing customer identities for CarMax

When customer login protocol is too rigid, it can cause friction, making consumers more likely to abandon your application. But to meet the demands of a modern customer experience, brands must be able to authenticate customers at all points of contact, while complying fully with international data protection laws. But what must be simple for customers can translate to complexity behind the scenes. A well-designed CIAM solution should give users a personalized, repeatable experience while protecting their data and maintaining their privacy.

After disrupting the automotive industry once, CarMax moved to transform the car buying experience a second time. The company launched an omni-channel customer experience initiative aimed at delivering outstanding digital services, world-class support, seamless in-store integration, and anywhere fulfillment. CarMax chose Okta as its identity partner in large part because of Okta’s ability to seamlessly connect best-of-breed technologies. The new platform excelled during the pandemic, easily adapting to surging online engagement. Okta’s progressive profiling and adaptive multi-factor authentication helped CarMax keep customer information secure with minimal friction, supporting customer trust throughout the buying journey.

Our guiding philosophy is to eliminate customer friction. Customers don’t care what technology we’re using. At the end of the day, it’s all about the experiences we’re unlocking for them.

Jason Peña
Product Manager, CarMax

A better digital experience for all

As customers continue to embrace online shopping and omni-channel digital experiences, retailers must find replacements for traditional identity validation. Retailers seeking rapid time to value, elevated customer experiences, and increased security need a third-party CIAM provider. Okta’s out-of-the-box digital identity solution can unlock innovative customer experiences while reducing costs and maximizing developer efficiency.

Okta handles complex authentication, authorization, and user management while ensuring frictionless customer experience across apps. Customers experience customized, branded login pages across channels, progressive profiling that improves understanding of user preferences, seamless social login, and easy-to-manage privacy and consent.

Learn more

The Okta Identity Cloud offers one trusted platform to secure and manage every customer identity in your organization. Modernize registration and onboarding to improve customers’ brand experience. Unify customer profiles into a single repository. And bring omni-channel initiatives to market quickly, freeing your teams to focus on the customer experiences that matter most. To learn more, visit okta.com.

About Okta

Okta is the leading independent identity provider. The Okta Identity Cloud enables organizations to securely connect the right people to the right technologies at the right time. With more than 7,000 prebuilt integrations to applications and infrastructure providers, Okta provides simple and secure access to people and organizations everywhere, giving them the confidence to reach their full potential. More than 10,000 organizations including JetBlue, Nordstrom, Siemens, Slack, T-Mobile, Takeda, Teach for America, and Twilio trust Okta to help protect the identities of their workforces and customers. To learn more, visit okta.com.