The need for a seamless shopping experience

The Lempert Report
May 14, 2013

Retailers with the most seamless shopping experience across all channels will capture more customers.

Whether it’s “showrooming” (when consumers examine merchandise in stores and buy online) or “webrooming” (when consumers search products online and purchase in stores), what’s clear, is that consumers purchase a number of ways. A recent Accenture Seamless Retail Study polled 750 U.S. consumers and 62 large global retailers and learnt that 73% of consumers “showroomed”, and 88% “webroomed”. It stands to reason then, that retailers with the most seamless shopping experience across all channels, from stores to online to mobile, will capture more customers. And the importance of seamlessness will rise because, the study says, 43% of U.S. consumers plan to shop more online and 23% plan to shop more with their mobile phones in the future. Creating this seamless experience might seem daunting for more traditional retailers. But, Chris Donnelly, global managing director of Accenture’s retail practice, thinks it’s achievable. He says; “Traditional retailers must take stock of their operational capabilities. They require a presence at every stage of the customer journey to deliver a consistently personalized, on-brand experience from discovery through research, purchase, fulfillment and beyond to product maintenance or returns.”? Interestingly, 94% of consumers said they feel in-store shopping is easy. Just 74% felt this way about online shopping and 26% about mobile shopping.