Retailers need to take advantage of their unique competencies for exceeding customer’s expectations and living upto promise by delivering a reliable experience.. Digital remains the “front door” for retail. Before arriving at a store, consumers have used digital media (web, mobile, social) and the Internet of Things (IoT) to collect information about products tha they intend to buy. However, customer demand for speed and immediacy of acquiring products requires increased use of the physical store. The convergence of digital and physical assets will continue to prove more powerful than digital on its own.
Execution is the point of differentiation for customer experiences. A study by Gartner indicated that more than 40% of data analytics projects will relate to customer experience. 25% of customer service operations will use virtual customer assistants by 2020, a jump from less than 2% in 2017. More than 70% of retailers want to use AI for better performance. Retailers are expected to spend $7.3 billion on AI by 2022. The number of retailers using AI has jumped from 4% in 2016 to 28% in 2018, said one of the reports of Capgemini.
When customers have a great experience, they’re willing to pay up to a 16% price premium says PwC. While shopping customers want an experience built on being Connected, Consistent, Contiguous and Convenient, whereas when buying in the store they expect the products available on the shelf, which are easy to find, easy to try and easy to return with fast check-out service. They wish to have detailed product information when they need it in real time and informed available staff. Salesforce believes that 53% of millennials don’t think store associates have the tools they need to provide great customer service, such as mobile devices for looking up customer profiles and recommending products.