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Customer Desires vs. Retailer Capabilities

Commissioned study from Accenture and Forrester Consulting reveals disconnect between customer needs and retailer realities.

Overview

A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Accenture and hybris software reveals a disconnect between what consumers want from an omni-channel retailer and the omni-channel capabilities that retailers are providing today.

Omni-channel retail is fast becoming the norm. Consumers have heightened shopping expectations in the era of omni-channel. Despite massive investments in people, process and technology, retailers are struggling to even come close to meeting the omni-channel expectations of their customers.

This comprehensive study from Forrester Consulting offers a view of the omni-channel landscape from both consumer and retailer perspectives. It also provides invaluable insights for retailers to move past common barriers as they invest in omni-channel initiatives.

“Omni-channel fulfillment programs can give store-based retailers an advantage over online pure plays, but as it stands today most retailers are not yet in a position to fully leverage their stores.”
VP eCommerce, Apparel Retailer

Background

In November 2013, Accenture and hybris software, an SAP company, commissioned Forrester Consulting to identify the challenges and obstacles that middle- and large-market multi-channel retailers face when deploying a successful omni-channel commerce strategy.

The study was designed to highlight disconnects between retailer omni-channel tactics and consumer requirements; it was also designed to help retailers build a deeper understanding of the business case and framework for investing in omni-channel initiatives.

The study involved conducting in-depth surveys with 256 US and European retail and manufacturing decision-makers involved in digital commerce initiatives and 1,503 multi-channel shopper.

Key Findings

Forrester’s study yielded four key findings:

Technology investment is critical to enabling exemplary omni-channel customer experience.
As consumers expect retailers to provide consistent and unparalleled service across all touchpoints, retailers must adopt new technologies that enable this.

Omni-channel customer experience is now a brand differentiator.
Today, many retailers and branded manufacturers see omni-channel maturity as a key brand differentiator, with increased customer satisfaction, loyalty and brand perception highlighted as the top benefits.

Many retailers have reached a false state of omni-channel comfort.
With many retailers having invested in some level of omni-channel capabilities, it may seem they are far along in their omni-channel initiatives. Yet customer expectations are constantly increasing. Features that only yesterday seemed game-changing are rapidly becoming the commonplace.

New titles alone won’t cut it — retailers must abolish siloed channel strategies altogether.
Regardless of who is ultimately responsible for omni-channel, a successful strategy requires more than just deep cross-functional alignment. It requires a new way of thinking focused on the customer, not on legacy channel structures.

Many retailers have reached a false state of omni-channel comfort.
With many retailers having invested in some level of omni-channel capabilities, it may seem they are far along in their omni-channel initiatives. Yet customer expectations are constantly increasing. Features that only yesterday seemed game-changing are rapidly becoming the commonplace.

New titles alone won’t cut it — retailers must abolish siloed channel strategies altogether.
Regardless of who is ultimately responsible for omni-channel, a successful strategy requires more than just deep cross-functional alignment. It requires a new way of thinking focused on the customer, not on legacy channel structures.

Omni-Channel

The Accenture Omni-channel Commerce Solution is a unique end-to-end solution, blending industry and technology know-how to help drive revenue and optimize omni-channel commerce operations.

 

Download PDFDownload PDF [PDF, 1.75 MB]

To succeed in today’s omni-channel environment requires a new organizational blueprint and a renewed focus on the customer.

 

Click here to download PDF. Omni-channel Commerce. This opens a new window.Download PDF [PDF, 962 KB]

Industry & topics highlighted

Retail