By Ian Auerbach, Industry Principal, Product Management
I spent the early part of the week in Barcelona at our XChange European Summit, where I had the opportunity to meet with a number of our clients and partners. During many of these meetings, the discussion focused on the future of the store and how to best utilize Demandware Commerce in the store to deliver a seamless, consistent shopping experience across all points of engagement with the customer.
The biggest takeaway from these discussions is that there is an increasing desire to have one platform drive the customer experience in the store, something that is just as important in Europe as it is in North America. Retailers on both sides of the pond want to remove barriers, simplify processes, share the same data across all channels and deliver the same experience to their customers, regardless of where, when or how the customer is shopping with them.
But retailers acknowledge that these changes will not happen overnight. Retailers must work within the boundaries of their current systems and organizational readiness to fully support a channel-agnostic approach to consumer engagement. The expectation from many retailers is, over time, solutions that support one consumer engagement platform will mature and organizations will adapt to support this.
There is a definite consistency in retailers’ vision for the store of the future and the desire to deliver a singular shopping experience; these changes will result in store systems moving away from the current focus on “transacting” to a much greater focus on “engagement.” Access to the “bigger picture” in the store – a singular view of key elements to better personalize the experience for the customer – will provide the store associate with greater information to assist in the sales process, and present more ways to engage with the customer on the sales floor.
We are just seeing the beginning of these changes in the store. There is a lot more to come…
Check out the recap of the keynotes from Day 1 of our XChange European Summit.