Skip to main content

Study Finds Omnichannel Necessary for Retailers’ Success in 2015

An e-commerce study conducted by Shopatron, the leading provider of cloud-based, distributed order management, found that retailers must invest in technology to create a memorable consumer shopping experience this year by prioritizing omnichannel solutions.

The study, conducted last month, found that 59 percent of retailers had no plans in 2015 to incorporate new order fulfillment solutions like ship-from-store or in-store pick up. Additionally, 71 percent of retailers don’t have an associate whose title includes “omnichannel” in it.

According to Shopatron’s findings,  several retailers have procrastinated organizing an enterprise-grade order management system due to high investment costs, lack of partnership with existing systems and little time and resources.

Ed Stevens, Shopatron founder and CEO, said, “Last year we heard from many retailers, of all sizes, on their reluctance to make the full omnichannel leap because of these barriers for implementation. That is why we announced the free Two-Year Pilot program to give retailers the opportunity to use a world-class order fulfillment platform on a trial-basis.”

He continued, “Cloud-based distributed order management removes those barriers of cost, allowing API integration with retailers’ existing systems, and deployment of a scalable solution within 90 days.”

The study also unveiled 41 percent of retail fulfillment partners would lessen the amount they buy from a brand they stock if it offered direct-to-consumer options, while 23 percent said they would boycott the brand. Despite this, 57 percent of the retail fulfillment partners would encourage brands they stock to use outlets like eBay if the orders directly affected the store.

Related Stories

Stevens concluded, “There is a very significant opportunity for retailers and brands to offer direct-to-consumer order fulfillment options. For brands, it is an easy way to drive online sales, and for retailers it is the perfect opportunity to strengthen their relationships with customers because you are getting their online orders to them quickly with the possibility to have a paying customer in the store.”

According to a similar report by EKN research, while retail stores need to change from a commerce destination to an omnichannel one, the brick-and-mortar store is the preferred shopping channel for consumers. As a result, store design and layout needs to evolve the way consumer expectations are.

The report found that 97 percent of the retailers surveyed believe stores can help brick-and-mortar retailers differentiate against online-only retailers. It also unveiled that eight in 10 Millennials prefer to shop in stores for most retail categories, and that four out of 10 of them are influenced by the in-store ease of navigation.

A retailer’s capabilities including its culture, management adaptability, business processes and technology systems are threatened by the need to dispense a type of customer-centric movement it isn’t trained for, according to the EKN report. In order to consistently and smoothly  offer an omnichannel experience to customers, retailers will need to re-train their organizational fiber.