A newly released report explores how the ongoing digital transformation in retail means that retailers are having to focus on a number of digital priorities in order to remain competitive in the omnichannel retailing landscape.
Retailers express confidence – but many are unprepared
The survey, CEO Viewpoint 2017: The Transformation of Retail, prepared by PwC, identifies that the top priorities for retailers are mobile capacities, big data insights, execution and profitability. This is because shoppers now demand an increasingly seamless retail experience, as they empower themselves through comparison shopping and use social media to influence their purchasing decisions.
Among the more eye-catching findings of the survey was that 52% of retail executives said they were very confident about their organisation’s prospects for future growth; however, 52% also surprisingly claimed not to have defined or started implementing a digital transformation strategy. 69% of respondents signalled an intention to increase their investment in digital transformation over the coming year.
Interestingly, those retailers that were already implementing a well-defined digital transformation strategy at the time of the survey enjoyed a greater proportion of online revenues and were naturally investing more in digital transformation than those that had no plans to develop a strategy. Same-store sales growth in the most recent fiscal year was also higher for such respondents.
The evolving digital landscape brings high stakes for retailers
In a world of intelligent interfaces and connected devices, it has never been more important for retailers to prepare for a tech-enabled future.
A recent interactive guide by Retail Week identified a series of marketing “game-changers” that it expected to emerge over the coming five years. These included a continued convergence between online and offline channels, sustained growth in the importance of social commerce, the Internet of Things (IoT) creating frictionless retail and “mobile first” becoming “mobile only”.
With another, 2015 study having calculated that more than £150 billion of retail sales are now influenced by digital, and that retailers whose services do not meet customer expectations could lose more than £12 billion a year, the need to cater to the digital consumer by adapting to the rapidly changing landscape has never seemed more pressing.
Here at Bis Henderson Recruitment, another trend that we expect to characterise the looming digital transformation era is a big rise in demand for logisticians with ecommerce experience. Ecommerce is a key sector in which our supply chain recruitment professionals specialise, which leaves us well-placed to serve what may be the rapidly changing requirements of your retail organisation in the many years to come.
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