Unified Commerce is Here: The Customer Experience of the Future

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.

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Tailoring the CX for Unified Commerce, by BPR
Tailoring the CX for Unified Commerce, by BPR

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 —

Educate

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.

  1. 62% of consumers check reviews/ratings before visiting a store
  2. 61% of retailers offer consumer product reviews for research

Engage

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.

  1. 64% of consumers are fine with retailers saving purchase history and personal preferences if more personalization is offered
  2. 61% of retailers make in-store and online shopping history available to associates to tailor the customer experience

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Execute

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.

  1. 73% of consumers want the ability to track orders across all points of interaction
  2. 42% of retailers offer the ability to track orders across channels

Enhance

Gathering feedback to understand customers’ likes and dislikes allows for a continuous improvement loop and helps empower associates to create the desired customer experience.

  1. 51% of consumers will stop shopping at a retailer after 1-2 poor in-store shopping trips
  2. 62% of retailers plan to improve their in-store customer experience within three years

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Enablers

Delivering a personalized customer experience requires the right technology and network.

  1. 68% of consumers are more likely to choose a store offering an automated returns process
  2. 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.

via BRP

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.

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2 Comments

  1. I think now more than ever, customers expect a “best in class” experience from all of their vendors. If they have that “start anywhere finish anywhere” experience at Amazon for example, they also expect that they’ll get it from other B2C companies, and even from B2B companies at work as well.

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