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hybris omnichannel commerce – why the retailers are investing

American fashion retailer Nordstorm has nearly 1 million followers who can shop via Instagram, and Macy’s, a competitor, is scaling down brick-and-mortar stores and increasing its digital features to raise its already-growing online sales. These brands have become the early starters in the development of the omnichannel experience.

The need for investment

Omnichannel retail means offering the same benefits, value and experience to the customer across various formats-physical stores, websites, kiosks, social media, mobile phones etc.offering a seamless shopping experience across all these platforms. “Shoppers do not see the world as online versus in-store. It is fully integrated in their minds and lives,” says Kit Yarrow, professor of marketing and psychology at San Francisco’s Golden Gate University. “But until very recently, most businesses were set up with an online division that often competed with their brick-and-mortar division. Omnichannel retailers need to get out of silo thinking and integrate various functions.”

Last year, Future Group announced an Rs100 crore investment in an omnichannel retail strategy, with the expectation that it would yield a 30% increase in revenue. Shoppers Stop recently announced its own plans for expansion too. Infiniti Retail which runs the electronics stores Croma had introduced a policy allowing customers to order online but pickup in stores. The bottom line is clearly spelled out by Govind Shrikhande, MD, Shoppers Stop Ltd: “Over the next 12-15 months every large player who wants to make an impact and make sure that their customer base doesn’t get eroded will move (towards omnichannel).”

The omnichannel impact

To develop their omnichannel retail, many businesses, including Future Group and Shoppers Stop, have turned to SAP hybris, a proven robust and adaptive ecommerce solution. A case in point is UK’s leading toy retailer The Entertainer, which has seen a jump in online sales by 32% after modernization of its online store with hybris. “The possibility to build-up and adjust hybris platform to our individual needs has…enabled us to implement our order processing services,”says Duncan Grant, the omnichannel manager at The Entertainer. Recently, the market research company Forrester named SAP hybris among those B2C commerce vendors who represent the best of the best. In its report, it said that hybris software has “strong or robust capabilities for order management, product information management, or experience management as a native capability of their core commerce management products.”

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Jul 14 2015
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