Get The Omnichannel Scoop From #RetailCCS
It has been a hectic week for the RTP team, and the holiday season isn’t to blame. (This time.) No, we are in the process of holding another Connected Consumer Series, sponsored by Microsoft Dynamics and several of its partners.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with the Connected Consumer Series, it is a week-long webinar series that we hold several times throughout the year. We onboard some of the top retail analysts and thought leaders to discuss new research, success stories and best practices around several topics, including: mobility, social, Big Data, store operations and the omnichannel customer experience.
Here’s a snapshot of speakers participating in this installment:
Retail Systems Research
Ernan Roman Direct Marketing
Boston Retail Partners
I had the opportunity to moderate two presentations: one featuring Ken Morris and the other featuring Pam Goodfellow. Both presentations were great in that they focused on the value of the store.
Sure, shoppers have access to all the information they need just by tapping on a smartphone screen. They have the ability to browse, price compare and verify purchases through one device, so it makes sense that many retail executives are panicking.
But both sessions confirmed that the store is by no means dead. With helpful associates — and a little technology — the store can be the star again.
One slide that still is clogged in my brain is from Pam’s session, in which she shared customer feedback regarding their in-store experiences.
Some comments included:
"Coworkers are very rude and standoff-ish to the customers. They act as if the customer inconveniences them even though it is their job to help the customers."
"They do not seem to know what they’re doing, especially when you order online and arrange to pick up in a store. I received different answers from everyone I called, and no one appeared to be interested in solving my problem."
There are two VERY big problems here; and I think they are common problems for retailers, regardless of their category.
1. Employees are not invested: Give them a reason to be! Store associates should be happy working for a brand, and be passionate about the products. Compelling training or incentive programs can give them the urge to learn and engage with their employees.
2. Strategies are not integrated: In regards to education, everyone must be on the same page, especially when it comes to omnichannel strategies. Everyone must know how to handle customers when they come in with an online order confirmation number. They also must know this option exists — especially if customers want a specific product and it’s not available in a store.
Needless to say, there’s a lot our retail readers can learn from the Connected Consumer Series.
We’re holding our final session today at 12 p.m. ET, so register now if you haven’t already! You also be able to watch all sessions on demand.