The development of e-commerce, despite its high value increase year-to-year, accounts for a relatively low share of total commerce in Central & Eastern Europe. Nevertheless, the growing number of persons shopping online and via mobile apps is the future generation of consumers. The current strategy of the store (POS) largely defines whether they will also be at the forefront of the omnichannel trend, or not.
The changes that the consumers expect both from online stores and the brick-and-mortar sector will drift towards integrating the offline and the online. Currently, consumers make their purchase decisions less (mobile purchases) or more (online purchases) consciously, under the influence of the content they saw on TV (multiscreening) or during a meeting outside (OOH advertising). The consumers are now more frequently using mobile and online payment option, when it is convenient. If the consumer wishes to be certain about a given product, they research online and purchase offline (ROPO). In the near future, changes will spread to the delivery area (click and collect) or personalising the offer (e.g. beacons).
We recommend modifying market and sales strategies to stores and brands that offer sales and customer service both online and offline to adjust to the changing reality (agile research). The process of creating strategic recommendations involves the following elements:
- analysing e-commerce and m-commerce market, whose result should be based on the analysis of available sales data and segmentation of customer needs (U&A);
- analysing the potential of market growth, in particular introducing innovations in the spirit of omnichannel in the areas of customer service, payments, and delivery/collection of the product;
- analysing the profile of innovation users is intended to identify distinguishing elements (value of the cart, the tendency to recommend, etc.) of users that are interested in taking advantage of omnichannel innovations;
- analysing the customer flow at the store or service point (e.g. a bank facility).
The upcoming changes in the area of online and offline commerce will first and foremost require that stores and brands focus on customer service (NPS), managing an integrated customer contact platform (CRM), and building loyalty and promoting effective customer recommendation system (Word of Mouth Marketing).