Retail Industry Still Faces Omnichannel Hurdles According to eTail West Study

By CIOReview | Wednesday, January 25, 2017
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FREMONT, CA: Omni-channel shopping capabilities can make or break brick and mortar businesses, according to the latest eTail West Director’s Report.Smartphones are taking over desktop revenues: by the end of 2015, 40% of ecommerce transactions were done on multiple devices, and are expected to complete70% by 2017.

This new report is based on four months of research calls and benchmarking with ecommerce and omnichannel professionals in advance of the eTail West conference, taking place in Palm Springs, CA, from February 27 – March 2, 2017.

“We are very excited to be tackling some of the retail industry’s most difficult challenges at this year’s event,” stated Lori Hawthorne, Strategy Director, eTail. “The trends that have emerged from our research show that a holistic omnichannel strategy is essential for retailers to succeed. Businesses have to prepare for a cultural transformation and invest in new technology and resources to connect with today’s omnichannel consumer.”

Retailers identified the following trends as top of mind for them in their business strategy:

• Create a seamless path from inspiration to purchase – digestible content for easy click to purchase and checkout—buyers can be often impulse buyers.

• Narrative content needs to be attainable, intuitive and immersive - content needs to inspire consumers, and be part of their lifestyle, while showing off product usage.

• Serve and reward – a wealth of consumer data allows smart brands to surprise and delight their customers via personalized offers based on their individual browsing and buying history.

• Change the experience – retailers and brands must reinvent their physical stores to better suitthe behaviors and expectations of today’s hyper-connected consumers.

• Specialized, faster, and more personalized– brands need to position themselves as experts with the products they offer, have competitive shipping plans, and showcase productsthat align with the buyer.

Most importantly from this report, retailers are aware that they cannot just change one aspect of their online strategies, but have to look at the way they interact with their customers as a whole in order to have a successful omnichannel strategy.