Part two of our series: How do APAC Retailers Ride the Wave of Change?
In our previous blog “In-Stores or Indoors – A Wave of Change for APAC Retailers!”, we extensively researched digital commerce and discussed its growing surge in the APAC region. We talked about what shoppers expect from APAC retailers, ways to tackle the problems and bridge the existing omnichannel retail gaps. And now it’s time to ride the wave of change!
Paddling into Green Waves
In the words of Andy Laudato, COO at The Vitamin Shoppe, “One order management system, one database, one inventory. Without these, you will never seem seamless to your customer”. In our smartly connected society, being disconnected is a catastrophe. With a unified view, you can draw the finish line. But the question is why should retailers embrace unified commerce?
From Point of Sale (POS) to eCommerce, from CRM to inventory management, many APAC retailers use disconnected systems for their business operations, giving rise to fragmented omnichannel retail. And such instances disallows retailers to offer hyper-personalized customer experiences.
To stay ahead of the competition, you must combine multichannel and omnichannel retailing into one kind of commerce, known as unified commerce. Let’s take a dive into the world of unified commerce. But, before retailers implement a unified customer journey, they must have a clear blueprint of how to implement it and assess its preparedness.
How Can a Unified Commerce Platform Benefit Your Brand and Its Customers?
It’s time to dive into the four key areas: swim, surf, carve and catch a wave – for your business to make unified commerce a great success.
Swim: The Mobilization of Retail is Real
62.4% of consumers are increasingly expecting a flawless online shopping experience and in-store digital experience. They engage with brands across multiple channels, such as eCommerce, mobile, and in-store. But how to track their activity across channels? To enable seamless communication between interconnected systems, practices like DevOps, automation, and other enablement methods can become an excellent match. You can build a unified shopping experience from social media, kiosks, physical retail locations, and any new sales channel your firm launches with a microservices architecture in place. Product launches, feature upgrades, and account updates can all be conveyed to customers easily if the IT and business teams are in sync. Retailers can bridge this gap between IT and business by aligning people along with technology.
A Surf Move – Unified Data 360 degree
Despite humongous data available, businesses still can’t track most of it from multiple systems in omnichannel retailing. A sophisticated data analytics platform offers a single view to retailers by capturing all fragmented data sources. Isn’t that wonderful? With one centralized platform, unified commerce allows your business to interpret customer preferences and adapt as per need. It empowers the retail digital transformation of your omnichannel experience. Primarily it evaluates landscape, checks for fitments, scalability, the purpose of applications, and works to create a centralized architecture and delight the customers with effective loyalty programs and offer personalized recommendations.
The next step in the evolution from Omnichannel Retail!
Carve Through The Eyes Of The Customer – Sharp Turn
No matter where customers buy whether online or in-stores. But they expect,
- To check inventory visibility across stores
- To click & collect
- To check the out-of-stock item and collect in the nearby brick-and-mortar store
- To return in-store for an item purchased online
All of this is possible with a unified commerce platform. You can not only keep track of inventory and supply chain in your business but also allow consumers to start, pause, continue, and end their shopping journey whenever they want with no disruption.
Retailers need to embrace new and emerging technologies such as AR/VR, retail kiosks, and smart mirrors to make their customers even more engaged, while also making their lives simpler.
Catch A Wave – Set KPIs And Goals Based On Workflow Rationale
No two customers are alike. If one is at the onboarding stage and the other is in the retention stage, the key performance metrics for each process must be different. Your aim for onboarding consumers, for example, maybe is to increase first-purchase transactions. In the engagement phase, your objective should be to cross-sell or up-sell. The purpose of the customer advocacy workflow should be to get more customer feedback.
The insights pull out important product and customer-focused information that would assist businesses to analyze current sales patterns using a unified commerce strategy. Your firm will maximize ROI and build healthy client connections if you track your marketing and sales activities. Better planning is feasible if each of these goals has its own set of KPIs.
Finish Your Ride With Style!
Research by industry leaders state that retail has carved out the new normal and there is no going back. The four areas described in this article are critical to a smooth unified commerce transition. APAC retailers must immediately focus on developing and implementing strategies that will future-proof their business, including reviewing the role of their stores and pivoting their online presence to be unified. Investing in technologies that expedite the digital outreach process and taking a holistic approach to your digital outreach plan will assure you long-term success.
Want to Go for Unified Commerce?
Perhaps you’d want to provide services like buy online, pick up in-store, or order “out-of-stock” goods for your customers’ convenience? Then, you’re on the lookout for the right content to assist you in achieving your goal.
Talk to us today to see how you can start the digital transformation journey for your retail business.
You can even follow us on Aspire Systems Retail to get detailed insights and updates about Retail!
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