Retailers are unifying commerce channels, study shows

By: Teamwork Retail

Companies that keep their commerce channels separate may alienate some shoppers who demand options when buying goods. Customers want consistent experiences regardless of whether they purchase products at brick-and-mortar locations, through e-commerce websites or via mobile applications. Brands that unify these channels can drive sales across the entire organization.

A new Boston Retail Partner survey discovered 250 percent more retailers will transition to single order management systems in the next three years. Companies are doing so to offer enhanced customer experiences by offering seamless shopping capabilities to audiences anywhere through any channel.

Ken Morris, principal at Boston Retail Partners, said retailers cannot afford to have silos regarding their channels. To overcome this potential issue, businesses must align their technology and operations to support customers.

“With significant advancements in order management systems from several vendors, we see a convergence of OMS with traditional [point-of-sale systems]. This convergence makes total sense, as a POS transaction is essentially just an order processed in real-time,” Morris added.

Companies that want to replace traditional POS solutions that are not ideal for omni-channel operations can do so by embracing cloud computing. The technology enables employees, regardless of physical location, to view real-time data pertaining to trends occurring throughout their brands. Personnel can use this information to improve customer service by offering more personalized rewards to audiences based on their purchasing habits.

An omni-channel POS integrated with cloud computing will help retail brands prepare their infrastructures for this next shopping craze. Consumers who know beforehand that they will experience consistency from an enterprise, whether they buy items in person, through e-commerce websites or via mobile devices, will be more apt to stay with that business for future purchases, as well as recommend the company to friends and family.

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