Digital Transformation Glossary: B

Jon Obar
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Any system that supports back-office applications. These systems are used as part of corporate management, and they work by obtaining user input and gathering input from other systems to provide a responsive output.


Tool used for managing business operations not related to direct sales, including inventory control, manufacturing, supply chain management and price book management.


Machine-readable code with alternating dark and light bars. The spacing between the bars signals what the numerical code is. A bar code can be a Universal Product Code (UPC) or any other numerical format, and helps track inventory going in and out of the store.

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Powered by BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) technology, this device can transmit messages to other Bluetooth-enabled devices, such as smartphones, tablets and smartwatches. Beacons have the capability to  recognize  a device based on its location or previous interactions, enabling a retailer to send notifications to a shopper tailored to where he/she is in the store and what type of customer he/she is.


Massive, complex sets of data that require sophisticated software programs. The data can be behavior-based (clicks, open rates, time spent on site), demographic (census information, income), social information (tweets, shares), timing and more.


Decentralized, distributed and public digital ledger used to record transactions across many computers, so the record cannot be altered retroactively without altering all subsequent blocks. Blockchain can help keep track of consumer data by storing and validating it, and through the use of smart contract logic designed to trigger actions when certain requirements are met.


Wireless technology standard for exchanging data over short distances from fixed and mobile devices, and building personal area networks (PANs).


Lightweight subset of conventional Bluetooth that supports Bluetooth 4.0 Core specification, used for connecting nearby smart devices within a specific range.


Analytics tool that records all activities of a user to provide data that could be utilized to analyze the trends and create actionable insights.