A hot topic at the National Retail Federation Show in New York this week is Omnichannel Retailing (OCR). The premise is to seamlessly integrate customers’ in-store, online and mobile shopping experiences. Let’s face it, when a retailer knows its customer the product is great; the service is better; and the experience is unified, consistent and fulfilling.
OCR allows retailers to move from just being available everywhere to delivering an integrated customer experiences no matter how, where or when customers choose to engage with a brand.
Verizon Wireless took a giant leap forward in OCR with its first Destination Store at Mall of America®. Chief Operating Officer Marni Walden introduced the 10,000-square foot retail playground as “the hub of the company’s customer experience transformation.” Verizon Wireless, like other OCR-focused companies, is designing an experience to meet its customers’ needs.
The transformation at Verizon Wireless also includes integrated systems to provide a unified customer experience via mobile, online and telesales. In the future, a shared cart will let representatives in a store pick up the conversation with a customer after they’ve shopped online, making the interaction easier and more streamlined. Additionally, the company also now offers in-store pickup at most retail locations, allowing customers to order online and pick their purchase up at a nearby store.
The evolution to Omnichannel 2.0 continues as savvy retailers measure which customer strategies were most successful and adapt their business practices accordingly.
While it’s anyone’s guess which retailers will be setting the OCR bar by the next holiday season, one thing is for certain, customers are the winners in this race.
This article is part of a series on retail trends in advance of the 2014 National Retail Federation’s Annual Convention being held in New York.
Photo Credit: BLOOMINGTON, MN - NOVEMBER 20: General atmosphere of the Verizon Wireless Destination store with Selena Gomez and Marni Walden, Verizon Wireless EVP & COO on November 20, 2013 at the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota. (Photo by Adam Bettcher/Getty Images for Verizon)