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Are retailers ready to link IT investment to customer experience? New report tracks multichannel experiences

by Jason Gumpert
Editor, MSDynamicsWorld.com
January 17 2018

Listening to retail executives at NRF BIG Show 2018 this week, you would have heard all about the importance of the customer experience. If there's a tough decision to make, use your customers' interests as a guide and chances are you can justify your choices - or at least your intent - later.

Customers reach retailers from lots of channels, that is understood. And new data suggests that retailers have learned to love their multichannel customers, who spend an average of 9.2 percent more than store-only shoppers, according to large retailers surveyed for a new report (registration required) by IDC on behalf of DXC Technology.

Exactly how much more valuable multichannel customers are varies, but retailers seem convinced that the trend will only continue to expand and they must get to work to meet customers wherever they choose to shop.

But how can retailers prioritize their IT budgets to drive better results based on this market reality? Should they start by revamping their data management practices and systems? Should they splurge on new custom POS or clientelling applications to optimize in-store interactions? Maybe new inventory management or fulfillment technology? Bots? Augmented reality? Heck, why not all of the above?

"Our research indicates that what improves customer experience in-store and improves engagement are the areas that need to see investment," Subroto Mukerji, vice president and general manager of Diversified Industries at DXC Technology, tells MSDynamicsWorld. "Then it depends on where [the business] is coming from, whether [it needs investment] in the area of supply chain, assortment mix, etc. But clearly it is the customer experience that ultimately impacts the decision to invest."

Retailers note the value of multichannel ...

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About Jason Gumpert

As the editor of MSDynamicsWorld.com, Jason oversees all editorial content on the site and at our events, as well as providing site management and strategy. He can be reached at jgumpert@msdynamicsworld.com.

Prior to co-founding MSDynamicsWorld.com, Jason was a Principal Software Consultant at Parametric Technology Corporation (PTC), where he implemented solutions, trained customers, managed software development, and spent some time in the pre-sales engineering organization. He has also held consulting positions at CSC Consulting and Monitor Group.

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