The Middle East retail sector is very dynamic and competitive in nature. As a result, businesses must focus on maintaining a robust physical and digital presence in the market. This enables firms to generate a personalized shopping experience on various platforms and promote customer satisfaction and brand loyalty. In the year 2019, the retail industry witnessed a rise in a myriad of marketing strategies to promote optimal organizational growth. One such approach is the introduction of Omnichannel retailing.
Growth of Omnichannel Retailing Strategies
According to industry experts, Omnichannel retail will assist businesses to meet the evolving market trends and customer preferences. Furthermore, it will improve customer retention rates by over 30 percent. Statistically, shoppers who are offered personalized products and services on multiple channels have a higher lifetime value of over 25 percent, compared to shoppers provided a single channel. Omnichannel retailing enable firms to boost repeat purchases and customer satisfaction rates. Therefore, more than 40 percent of the business executives list Omnichannel retail as a top priority for organizational success.
Over 50 percent of customers prefer shopping from brick and mortar stores. However, experts predict that the ever-growing presence of E-commerce will significantly impact offline retail sales. The estimated value of E-Commerce within the UAE is expected to reach $27.2 billion by the year 2020. As a result, retailers must rely on both online and in-store platforms to better reach their target audience.
Due to the highly complex and demanding business environment, retailers must improve their presence on various online and offline platforms. Therefore, they must invest in Data Analytics to gain access to accurate and real-time customer information. Data generated through Omnichannel retailing strategies assist firms to gain a better understanding of current industry trends. Moreover, they also help in customizing customer communications and increasing conversion rates across various platforms. As a result, retailers can gain a competitive advantage and strengthen customer relationship to boost brand loyalty and advocacy.
Tackling Industry Threats
However, the retail industry has witnessed a rise in challenges to implement optimal Omnichannel retailing strategies. Since data generated is vast and challenging to manage, retailers are facing problems to process and manage customer data effectively. Over 30 percent of the businesses have suffered the issue of incomplete customer data which leads to missed sales opportunities and dissatisfied customers. Therefore, firms must introduce disruptive technologies to derive optimal value from customer data. Thus, over 35 percent of the firms are expected to opt for virtual data centers to maintain and secure data in a cost-efficient manner.
Over the past few years, the industry has witnessed a growth in mobile searches. Statistically, 60 percent of the brick and mortar customers use smartphones to research product offerings before conducting purchase decisions. Therefore, businesses must introduce mobile-friendly websites to attract online shoppers as smartphones influence more than 25 percent of the retail sales. Also, shoppers can check stock availability and gain product information before conducting purchase decisions.
Omnichannel retailing assists businesses to facilitate a seamless customer journey across platforms. Furthermore, they also assist firms to tackle market competition and improve overall customer experience. As a result, to effectively grow and flourish within the highly competitive and unpredictable market, retailers must opt for Omnichannel strategies.
Written By: Rajiv Prasad