COVID-19 has dramatically impacted the retail industry and how consumers approach shopping – over 306M Americans have been affected by shelter in place orders – nearly 95% of the U.S. population. Meanwhile, U.S. retailers’ online year-over-year revenue growth is up 68%. Many trends predicted to take years have happened in months, in fact, the rate of eCommerce delivery growth forecasted to occur over the next 10 years happened in just eight weeks. How can retailers make this pivot from brick and mortar storefronts to a digital-first omnichannel experience?
One: Eliminate friction for customers
Retailers need to create digital experiences that are optimized for shopping, and with mobile users in mind. Mobile devices represent 56% of total order share and 71% of total eCommerce traffic and authentication can enable personalized experiences for loyal, repeat customers that differ from those for first-time shoppers.
Two: Innovate the omnichannel experience
To adapt to new consumer behavior and expectations, companies need to make themselves present where consumers are most likely to engage. This includes conversational commerce on channels like Google Business Messages, Facebook Messenger, and Apple Business Chat. Brands must remember to maintain consistent customer journeys since 55% of shoppers say their retail experiences are somewhat disconnected as they switch between channels.
Three: Invest in agility
Traditionally siloed companies will be challenged to compete in a rapidly changing eCommerce market. Investing in a headless architecture connected by modern APIs will allow for flexible integration to applications and consumer touchpoints. This approach of positioning a strong transactional backend system can create content-rich commerce experiences for customers.
The channel shift from physical to digital and the surge of eCommerce are trends predicted to endure long past the era of COVID-19. So, what is your company doing to optimize its digital presence?
How COVID-19 is transforming e-Commerce – Forbes
US retailers see online growth YoY in April similar to recent holiday season – CCInsights
How COVID-19 is changing consumer behavior – now and forever – McKinsey
COVID-19 thrusts e-commerce into the spotlight – CIO
Salesforce unwraps its 2017 connected shoppers report – Salesforce