Saturday, August 11, 2012

Retailers and cross-channel consistency: A global report

How well are retailers delivering on their cross-channel promise to customers? Okamura Consulting, in conjunction with its global Ebeltoft Group partners, set out to answer just that question, and recently released a cross-channel benchmarking study of 144 large multi-channel retailers in 17 markets. 

You can access the recently released “Global Cross-Channel Retailing Report: The (Un)Connected Store” from here.

Some of the Top Level Findings are:

One of the top findings is that Cross-channel is still in its infancy, even in the U.S. market – which the study shows is the most mature. Audits of leading retailers typically show how far we have to go before the industry can say cross-channel “best practice.”

Electronics retailers in the global sample are most developed, as multi-channel retailers try to stay competitive with Amazon and other pure players. They were followed by general retailers (department stores and hypermarkets), D-I-Y (home improvement stores) and specialty fashion retailers. 

The global averages (i.e. in those markets outside the U.S. and U.K.) show minor differences by category, but the gap is quite pronounced when we look at the two leading markets, the U.S. and U.K. In both of these markets, we can see how cross-channel has been given priority by large, market share-leading retailers. 

On a more surprising note, it was good to see cross-channel retailing happening in emerging markets like Turkey, or with small retailers in the Singaporean market. On the other hand, Australia, which has been a hot market for cross border e-commerce, still under-performs on cross-channel among prominent retailers.

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