Omni-channel retailing is delivering a more savvy customer and causing sleepless nights among retailers who are battling to solve the mystery of how to consistently serve customers at any place, any time and in any way.
According to our recent global research, fashion brands excel in providing superior customer service in one channel, but struggle to replicate it across others.
Among the firms we analysed against 64 criteria, in some areas the best, among them Oasis and American Eagle, were performing three times as well as the rest, so there is a huge opportunity gap.
Creating that seamless customer journey requires three elements: a clear customer experience strategy to help with customer acquisition, engagement and retention; a single source of customer information; and a clear plan for how the supply chain infrastructure and total operating model will evolve to support changing customer expectations, channels, volumes and economics.
The only way to increase market share in a flat economy is by taking business away from rivals. Improving customer service and loyalty and creating consistency across channels is one of the key enablers to make this happen and needs to be at the heart of a retailer’s strategy.
- Sue Butler, Director at management consultancy Kurt Salmon