The Sanderson Retail Insights Survey 2015 revealed that retailers must work harder than ever to maximise their opportunities, improve the customer experience and win sales.
The pace of change in the retail industry has never been so fast. New technology and new demands are meaning that retailers are having to work hard to keep on top. But where are things going and what should retailers be most concentrating their focus on right now? The Sanderson Retail Insights Survey 2015 highlighted a number of issues that retailers must ensure they remain on top of in order to remain competitive.
The future of click and collect
Retailers have always struggled with delivery but the huge explosion in click and collect services has helped them to deliver a much improved shopping experience since the shopper is assured of getting product when and where they want it. But it’s an area of the business that retailers can’t afford to stand still in since constant development, refinement and rollout is key. Indeed in our survey almost all (90%) of retailers said that innovation in click and collect was an important part of their multi-channel strategies this year. In a market that’s growing 20% and where almost three quarters of customers have used such a service according to IMRG it’s no surprise it’s an area that retailers want and need to exploit to the max.
“Do you think innovation in click and collect is an important aspect of multi-channel strategy this year? 90% said yes.”
Online and in-store is becoming more blended than ever
Of course the advantage of click and collect services comes from their ability to draw the customer in-store even if they have bought online. But technology is enabling greater selling in-store too with iPad and kiosk use offering extended ranges and better customer service and location based technologies such as beacons enabling sharing of location relevant data and offers to drive sales. This convergence of online and in-store is a key theme of today’s retail world and something that the Sanderson Retail Insights 2015 survey also highlighted.
“Do you think that selling online in-store using ordering solutions such as iPads and kiosks will become commonplace by 2016? Nearly two-thirds (63%) said yes.”
Logistics are far from easy
Today’s customer is a difficult beast. They don’t care about the hidden challenges of getting product to them - they simply care about getting it where they want it when they want it and ideally they want a range of delivery services from which to choose. But as much as the retail industry would like it to be as easy as that it simply isn’t the case. The Retail Insights Survey 2015 showed just how much of a challenge it was with only 4% rating the industry as 9 or 10 out of 10 at dealing with the logistical challenges associated with providing a range of delivery services.
“How well do you feel the retail industry is dealing with the logistical challenges involved in providing a range of delivery services? Average response was 6.17 out of 10 where 10 meant 'very well'”
Efficient stock and customer relationship management is key
Retailers are having to manage stock and their customers better than ever but it’s a challenge retailers are still grappling with. The survey showed that the single view of the customer remains some way off whilst efficient cross location management of stock also remained a pipe dream for many.
“How well do you think retailers are managing stock across various channels and multiple locations? Only 2% ranked very well (ie 9 or 10 out of 10)”
The survey showed that retailers can’t afford to stand still. If you haven’t got retail technology high on your priority list you risk being left behind.
Learn more about the state of retail in 2015 and beyond, download our free eGuide 'Retail Insights Survey 2015 - Essential Understandings'