[ 7:35 - 10:22 ] Implementing a seamless customer experience
We discussed the key ingredients that contribute to a seamless customer experience for omnichannel retailers. Some of these key components are:- (1) Accurate cross-location inventory data, (2) High-quality staff training, (3) Adequate technology. Additionally, we talked about how to activate all channels & facilitate communication between the eCommerce and in-store teams. At the end of the day, omnichannel is all about teamwork and synchronization across multiple units to deliver high-quality service to the customer. Achieving a seamless customer experience is a team effort!
[ 12:15 - 16:06 ] Measuring store KPIs
As the line between online and in-store retail teams is disappearing amid the omnichannel transformation, so too are the KPIs we use to measure the performance of these teams. In conversation with Global Omnichannel and Retail Operations Manager Angela Picin, we chatted about how modern omnichannel merchants can transform their store KPIs to meet today's standards. Aligning store KPIs with omnichannel strategies ensures that in-store and online teams are not competing with one another, but rather working together to help the brand deliver on its promises to customers. Angela discussed her experience looking at cancellation rate as a KPI because cancellations can happen from orders both online and in the store.
[ 18:45 - 21:14 ] Setting omnichannel targets for stores and store associates
How do omnichannel initiatives affect the sales targets that we set for our in-store staff, including store managers and store associates? Angela has seen success when endless aisle sales are attributed to the in-store retail associates, and ship-from-store sales are attributed to eCommerce. As she explains in the episode, the endless aisle is a real effort from a sales point of view, while ship-from-store isn't a heavy lift. But recently, they've experienced an increased number of ship-from-store sales coming in for particular store locations, which gives stores the additional responsibility of returns for these items.
[ 21:32 - 23:22 ] Developing a modern compensation model for store associates
Many retailers today struggle with developing a successful attribution model that incorporates both their in-store and eCommerce teams. We've spoken to a number of brands who take the approach of attributing all ship-from-store orders to online sales and all endless aisle orders to store sales. At first glance, this strategy seems like a great way to delineate who put in the real effort in closing the sale and attribute accordingly. The problem is that ship-from-store orders create additional responsibility and work for store associates, especially when they need to manage returns for these orders as well. When the store is also performing the role of a fulfillment center, retailers need to build out a compensation model for the items fulfilled or returned in-store.
[ 24:56 - 28:46 ] Achieving accurate, unified inventory information
We discussed Angela's team's efforts to achieve accurate, real-time inventory data across all retail locations, and make it available within one unified system. Having adequate technology is one piece of the puzzle, but she also stressed the importance of cross-department collaboration and communication. From the IT team to the associates working in the stores, everyone needs to be aligned to make sure inventory information is accessible and accurate.
[ 28:51 - 29:36 ] In-store inventory accuracy for store fulfillment
Each cancellation means one unhappy customer, but it also indicates a lesson to learn and points to changes we can make in our systems to ensure we are more prepared in the future. At HotWax Commerce, our goal is to help every retailer achieve unified inventory information and make this data available to the entire company, across online and in-store teams. But as we do it, it's important that inventory data is highly accurate to deliver high-quality services to our customers. In conversation with Angela Picin we discussed how omnichannel retailers can achieve in-store inventory accuracy and avoid overpromising to their customers.
[ 37:20 - 40:26 ] Top 4 pieces of advice for omnichannel retailers
We discussed Angela's experience managing successful omnichannel retail initiatives and what she has learned throughout the process and she shared some fantastic insights. She speaks about the importance of cross-department communication, thinking like the customer at all stages of the buying journey, and starting small in order to scale up a successful program.