Changes in how customers utilize technology in the shopping experience has brought dramatic changes to the retail shopping experience and changed the landscape of how retailers approach the in-store customer experience.
Even as the amount of digital interaction increases, the potential value of in-person service experiences can give brick-and-mortar retailers an experience advantage that online simply can’t deliver.
If retailers are able to take advantage of data to marry the online portion of customers’ shopping habits and follow up with unique in-person interaction at retail locations, the potential for relationship development is tremendous.
At this year’s Future Stores Conference, I’ll be attending and looking forward to the expert line up industry experts who will address the key pain points of in-store experience, retail operations, IT, and cross-channel sales. Future Stores is the conference for retailers looking to bridge the gap between digital and retail consumer experience.
Future Stores is critical for retailers because it focuses on well-curated and highly targeted insight on the future trends in retail and how retail decision makers can utilize customer experience to deliver sales-driving positive business results.
Omer Minkara from Aberdeen Group, recently reported in an online Webinar that nearly 95% of companies are not satisfied with their use of customer data. Taking advantage of data and customer analytics is critical if retailers are to differentiate in their retail shopping experience.
The Retail Data Insight Challenge
One of the critical challenges that retailers often face in managing customer data as part of their experience strategy is the quality of the metrics. Successful data-driven retailers are able to balance quantity of metrics gathered and quality of actions resulted from metrics gathered. They execute on being able to turn behavioral data into business results.
Execution is key because from the customer perspective, shopping experience consistency is one of the top frustrations that customers have with retailers. Customer experience deteriorates in the retail space if pricing isn’t synchronized across channels, or if product information isn’t readily available online, or if in-store experts aren’t able to give insightful assistance during the shopping interaction.
3 Steps to Successful Data-Driven Retail Experience
Data-driven retailers can’t just focus on meeting customer expectations, they need to consistently exceed them in order to win customers with their in-person experience and provide the online support that customers need.
1. Use the Right Technologies to Convert Data into Insights
All business decision-makers must have a unified view of customer behavior and create a co-ordinated effort in integrating the data into the retail shopping experience.
2. Improve the Customer Experience with Omni-Channel Service
Although segmentation is important to help organizations understand the unique expectations their customers have from various shopping channels, customers expect consistency between the channels and all service efforts must be aligned and contribute to the end-result that customers want.
3. Integrate Customer Data to Optimize Supply Chain and Marketing Activities
Exceeding expectations in today’s competitive consumer landscape demands visibility into all service areas of the retail experience.
From inventory and fulfillment, to pricing, product marketing, and retail customer service, in order for organizations to capitalize on the opportunities available to them, back-end systems must be unified and visible to key decision makers. Data is the way that retailers can differentiate, organize, and integrate the new customer expectations in today’s digital age.