Just 17 percent of retailers feel confident that they are delivering a seamless, connected experience across channels and functions for their customers, according to new research commissioned by SAP and PwC, conducted by r2i (PwC’s research arm) . The findings come against the backdrop of a tipping point in the way customers are researching and buying products – across multiple channels, including mobile platforms.
The study, which surveyed over 300 retailers and 2,100 consumers across six major markets in Europe, was designed to gain a deeper insight into consumer and retailer perspectives on the integrated shopping experience. The study found that while the in store experience is still important to consumers – for some product categories, the majority of purchases happen in store – it’s the omni-channel experience that retailers are really being judged on. Only 50 percent of consumer respondents felt they got a consistent and superior multi-channel experience from their favourite retailers.
More than 60 percent of retailers agreed that siloed business units are having an impact on delivering smooth connectivity for customers at all levels across all channels. Of those surveyed, over a third said they were struggling with implementing a ‘single view of the consumer’, with just 8 percent having already achieved this.
Shane Finlay, Director of Retail Industries, SAP UKI, commented: “Retail presents a key battleground in really winning customer satisfaction, especially through connected systems and seamless shopping experiences. As the research shows, some retailers still have a way to go in getting to the endpoint in their digital transformation journeys. The good news is technology is now available to provide that enabling platform for growth, differentiation and innovation by integrating the front office seamlessly with the back office, and to power personalisation and decision making with sophisticated analytics. By really going back to the consumer, brands can derive insights that will allow them to stay ahead of their competition and ultimately, position them as market leaders.”
The study identified a number of key challenges that retailers are facing in the digital era, including:
The full report can be accessed here.
Neil ran his first SAP transformation programme in his early twenties. He spent the next 18 years working both client side and for various consultancies running numerous SAP programmes. After successfully completing over 15 full lifecycles he took a senior leadership/board position and his work moved onto creating the same success for others.