Smart retailers and brands consistently experiment with emerging technologies and tools to optimize customer experiences both online and in-store. The 2022 data, however, indicates that the investment in emerging tech is slightly down compared to previous years. One reason is likely that organizations have put innovation on the backburner because they have simply been too busy focusing on keeping up with customer demands caused by the pandemic such as curbside pickup and fast delivery.
Digital commerce moves so quickly – today's innovations becomes tomorrow's best practices – and it is therefore so important to dedicate resources and budget to consistently evaluate and test new experiential solutions and tactics to elevate the customer experience across the entire customer journey. When it comes to innovation, it is key to remember that not all innovations are robots and drones. Sometimes innovations can be brilliant basics or simply be a better way of doing something that already exists.
As technology changes peoples' behaviors, more consumers are on the lookout for innovative ways to engage and shop with retailers.
About one third of desktop and mobile apps offer some kind of innovative experiences but only 19% include those features on mobile sites. While the most relevant and effective solutions vary by vertical, most of the popular experiential commerce tools provided by retailers and brands in the Index are focused on virtual try-ons, visual search, and augmented reality.
Where 2021 saw an increase in store activities to drive traffic back to stores, the 2022 index reveals a decline in the number of retailers and brands that offer new in-store experiences. As ecommerce continued to rise, many shifted their focus back to strengthening the digital commerce approach. In addition, the labor shortage is greatly impacting retail, making it even more challenging for organizations to service customers yet alone support in-store events.
You dedicate time, resources, and budget toward delivering the best customer experience possible. But, are you truly meeting customer expectations? How do you compare to your competition? See how you perform against the Omnichannel Retail Index to help prioritize your digital roadmap and make smarter investment decisions.