Magazine Article | March 21, 2014

Can You Meet Consumer Expectations At Any Cost?

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April 2014 Integrated Solutions For Retailers

There’s no prescriptive approach to establishing true, seamless, anychannel retail commerce, but experts agree on four imperatives to the equation.

The race to any-channel (or omni-channel, if you prefer) seamlessness is looking more like a disorderly, staggered-start distance medley relay than it is a sprint. Retailers, bound by legacy, channel-specific sales and fulfillment systems, and equally legacy mindsets, are for the most part only making incremental advances toward presenting an any-channel brand and meeting any-channel consumer demand. The field of merchants in the race is so scattered around the track that it’s become difficult to determine who’s leading and who’s flailing. Retail technology vendors fuel the race with cheers, hype, and promises of the spoils of victory, only to quietly turn their attention to the plodding task of mapping next moves as batons are passed and split-time performances assessed. It’s a new event, one without precedent and rife with complexity.