Unified Commerce is Here: The Customer Experience of the Future
According to a Latest Report, 73% of Customers Want Order Tracking Across all Touchpoints but only 7% of Retailers Currently Offer “Start Anywhere, Finish Anywhere” Order Capabilities
Customer-centric retailing and selling are the new business models. The new model goes beyond the traditional horizon of omnichannel, breaking down the lofty walls between internal intent silos and the potent customer experience platforms.
” Unified commerce and a customer experience (CX) that transcends channels are the foundation of the new retail model.” – BRP
The future of customer experience is now, and Unified Commerce would play the biggest role in assigning performance-related metrics to the use of emerging technologies — AR, VR, AI, and video for commerce. BRP’s 2018 Customer Experience/Unified Commerce Survey of top North American retailers offers insights into retailers’ current priorities and initiatives as digital and physical retail environments converge to facilitate a seamless experience across channels.
The report also compares retailers’ priorities with customer expectations – based on recent results from the 2018 Retail Consumer Study conducted by Incisiv and sponsored by BRP and Windstream Enterprise – to understand how retailer priorities align with customer expectations.
The E5 of Customer Experience
BRP released the key survey findings, organized around the E5 of Customer Experience. These are —
Customers start the purchasing process by researching the brand and products, so it is critical to ensure they and the store associates have information and tools that are easy to access and use.
- 62% of consumers check reviews/ratings before visiting a store
- 61% of retailers offer consumer product reviews for research
The first step in customer engagement is to identify the customer early in the process and offer associates the ability to leverage customer information to allow personalized interaction.
- 64% of consumers are fine with retailers saving purchase history and personal preferences if more personalization is offered
- 61% of retailers make in-store and online shopping history available to associates to tailor the customer experience
To meet and exceed today’s elevated customer expectations, retailers must deliver unified commerce capabilities and empower associates with the right tools to optimize the experience.
- 73% of consumers want the ability to track orders across all points of interaction
- 42% of retailers offer the ability to track orders across channels
Gathering feedback to understand customers’ likes and dislikes allows for a continuous improvement loop and helps empower associates to create the desired customer experience.
- 51% of consumers will stop shopping at a retailer after 1-2 poor in-store shopping trips
- 62% of retailers plan to improve their in-store customer experience within three years
Recommended Read: Influencer Solutions Will Become a Core Component of the Marketing Stack
Delivering a personalized customer experience requires the right technology and network.
- 68% of consumers are more likely to choose a store offering an automated returns process
- 13% of retailers offer an automated returns process
The Role of AI in Unified Commerce
The latest BRP report on the state of Unified commerce highlights the growing role of AI and voice-search retailing. Leading AI persona-builders like Siri, Alexa, and Google have become mainstream channels for brand-human interactions.
Unlike retail and online marketing teams that are yet to find the right balance between AI for customer service and empathy, customers are very comfortable with talking to AI and virtual assistants compared to their human counterparts.
While it’s too early to state the true effect of AI on unified commerce and retail CX, it’s the best time to leverage the vast amounts of customer preference and transaction data gathered to personalize the customer experience. Giants like Amazon and other multi-channel retailers are currently experimenting with AI to for buying suggestions based on customer’s historical data.
Recommended Read: B2B Buying Disconnect: Are You Targeting the Right Set of Customers?