Commerce Trends

by Manhattan Associates

Starting a multichannel reaction

Often interacting with a single retailer in multiple channels can seem quite seamless.  The brand is represented in the same way, promotions are often the same online and offline and there is selected connectivity between channels for example click and collect.  Retailers continue to invest in their front end customer propositions to create rewarding customer experiences.

However, if you looked under the hood, the seamlessness in operations isn’t as smooth as the front end.  Fulfilment operations and store networks operate in semi-silos, legacy systems being pushed to their limits doing things they weren’t designed for and virtual sticky plasters in place helping to integrate disparate systems together.  All to deliver what the customer wants. 

 clothing shop

And the thought of empowering store associates with the knowledge to have personalised one on one conversations in-store, in the same way as websites serve up recommendations based on personal preferences, seems almost impossible.

However, the great news is the back end can be as seamless as the customer user experience.

The answer lies in coordinating order fulfilment, inventory control and customer experience together.  By becoming customer centric and putting your order management system (OMS) as your backbone in operations, it allows any channel or touchpoint in the customer journey to provide a great service.

Taking information from your WMS, ERP, POS, ecommerce platform, an OMS provides not only a single view of inventory in real-time, but also a single view of your customer.  This helps make fulfilling customer orders more profitable for your business and by combining an OMS with clienteling solution creates a powerful tool in store.  Together they empower your store associates by serving up the history of that individual customer enabling them to make personal recommendations based on their previous purchase history, wish lists, online preferences and then matches the suggestions to available inventory.  Wow what a different in-store experience.

Using data to shape better customer service and journeys will drive sales and boost profits.  For more information on how, see Manhattan Associates eBook on More than a theory: Data really does bring retail success.