Your customers witness the power of technology on a daily basis. They use their smartphones to deposit checks, monitor their heart rate and REM sleep, and summon vehicles to pick them up wherever they’re standing.
When there’s a problem, your customers look to technology for a solution. That’s especially true when they’re shopping in your store, and it’s one reason why brands are so eager to add new software and solutions to their business: Each new piece of technology can potentially improve your retail customer experience and give your brand a competitive edge.
But placing too much focus on the software and technology itself can distract from the primary goal of delivering a great customer experience. You want the technology to target the tedious work so your associates can devote more of their energy and attention to the customers right in front of them.
Your retail tech stack is only as good as its ability to help you deliver a more engaging customer experience. Here’s a look at how we can help your teams use the right technology to improve the experience of your customers every time.
Reducing Friction at Checkout
Whether shopping online or in-store, the easier you can make it for your customers to find what they want (and what they didn’t know they wanted!) and pay for it, the more likely they are to come back. With time at a premium, it’s no surprise that 100 percent of customers prefer a faster checkout. With omnichannel customer histories, contactless payments, and in-store inventory visibility, you can make it happen.
Omnichannel customer histories allow shoppers and retail staff to see a customer’s complete history right on their screen in any channel. Why is this so important? For one thing, this data powers conveniences such as Buy Online, Return In Store (BORIS). But also, imagine an in-store customer decides to try shopping online with you. When they get to check out, their account has already been created and pre-populated with their address. No need to enter all that info again!
Contactless payment options like Apple Pay can also dramatically speed up checkout both online and in-store. When shopping in-store, most shoppers have their phone closer than their wallet, making checkout faster not only for themselves but also for the customers waiting in line behind them. And online, digital payments like Apple Pay associate all of the customer’s info and allow instantaneous payment, making checkout up to 10 times faster.
Bringing inventory visibility to both online and in-store can also supercharge sales. By making all of your inventory available for sale online, you increase the likelihood that when a customer finds something they want to buy, it will be in stock. And when your per store inventory is displayed online, local shoppers can pre-shop your stores and see exactly what is available at each location. This way, they can Buy Online and Pickup In Store (BOPIS) or run in and grab exactly what they want, without having to wait.
The quickest way to speed up your checkout is to deploy online and in-store solutions that are optimized for both customers and employees to reduce friction. Accumula gives you a choice of solutions that are integrated to work together to make checkout more convenient regardless of channel.
Personalized Order Delivery
Amazon has set a sky-high bar for order delivery. It seems like everyone now expects their order in two days or less, no matter who they shop from. But you’re making a mistake if speed is your only priority when fulfilling orders. Customers want fast service, but they also want flexibility, which means giving them the option of going directly to a store, having items shipped to their home, or a combination of the two.
The metrics around this trend are surprisingly compelling. BOPIS now accounts for nearly 70 percent of online sales at certain retailers. That’s a huge savings in shipping costs, but that’s only the start of benefits to your bottom line. Research has found that 20 percent of the time, shoppers picking up orders at your store will wind up making additional purchases.
It is true that in-store shoppers tend to be more valuable than online shoppers—but there’s an important catch. Anywhere from 35-60 percent of the people walking through your doors will end up making a purchase, compared to just three percent who visit your online site. Yet 50 percent of the customers visiting your store will start their shopping experience online, and 35 percent of the shoppers in your store will end up visiting your online store.
What does this mean, exactly? Your customers are moving fluidly between in-store and online, and your customer experience—including fulfillment options—needs to do the same.
Accumula allows you to serve your customers across channels and meet the new challenges of an “Amazonian” world without overwhelming your teams. Accumula orchestrates the experience in the background, allowing your teams to focus on satisfying the customer standing right in front of them.
Easy Integration to Minimize Tech Overhead
These days, there are thousands of apps to help retailers run their business. But they aren’t all created equal and they aren’t all necessarily right for your brand. In fact, despite the plethora of options, some Direct-to-Consumer (DTC) brands are building their own software from scratch to try to make sure the get the experience “just right.”
In most cases, though, there is no reason to reinvent the wheel. There are great solutions out there. The trick is picking the right ones that work together and can scale as you grow. Accumula makes sure the most critical parts of your tech stack—including POS, Ecommerce, ERP, fulfillment, and marketing—play well together so your team can deliver frictionless experiences.
Accumula’s tech-agnostic approach makes it easy to fully orchestrate workflows between apps so your teams don’t need to manage multiple logins or keep up with complicated trainings. As new platforms arise, you have the freedom to choose the best platforms for you without disrupting the rest of your business. In the end, you’ll benefit from better functionality, reduced technical errors, and more efficient day-to-day operations.
More Opportunities to Build Brand Loyalty
Brand loyalty is the product of a great customer experience. Today’s shoppers are seeking out brands that deliver more engaging shopping experiences and superior service. To wow them, you need a solid brand strategy and the right tools to execute it. Accumula gives you more opportunities to cultivate relationships using your own playbook and your chosen set of tools so you can create the kind of experiences that are not only competitive, but also brand-defining.
Accumula upgrades the retail experience by empowering businesses to say “yes” to almost any customer request. With service like that, why would your customers say no?
Retail technology is changing fast. New offerings can often sound too good to be true. Sometimes, they are.
The best retail apps will provide immediate benefits to your customers and your teams. The good news is, if you find an app isn’t right for you, you don’t have to start over. You have choices. Accumula works with a number of best-in-breed apps so you can keep your options open and build the retail stack of your dreams—the one that works best for you.
Curious how Accumula can give you more time to spend on your customers? Start a chat with us today.