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It’s Time to Rethink Retail’s Digital Role

Rohit Batra, Director, Revenue and Customer Management, Amdocs | Sept. 16, 2016
A successful digital business is more than just the sum of its digital channels and products. Behind every effective digital business is an understanding of the need to offer customers, as well as employees, a truly digital experience.

Local telcos have been revamping their stores by making them more customer-centric with self-service digital kiosks and more interactive content in-store. Smart Communications Inc. launched its centre for innovation, convergence and connectivity called Smart Jump Experience Centre, while Globe Telecom has its own Globe Gen3 Stores which caters to different lifestyles aiming to delight customers by fueling their passion in the areas of music, entertainment, productivity, and life.

BSS capabilities should also provide store agents with a complete view of the customer's account, services and usage profile across assisted and unassisted channels. In addition, the application used by the agent needs to be available on tablets and smart devices to allow the screen to be shared with the customer, imparting a sense of trust. Omni-channel journeys also need to be supported by the BSS to ensure in-store customer satisfaction, as well as a great overall shopping experience.

Step 3: Go beyond expectations

The opportunity to make a vivid impression and create an emotional experience for the customer is greater at a retail store than on any other channel. Once service providers are able to deliver relevant engagements they then need to look at technologies to further connect the online and the digital worlds to cater to customers' intensifying digital expectations. Innovation in the areas of visual display walls, geo-fencing, gadgets and lifestyle equipment, and digital concierge-like services will enable service providers to help shoppers through their journeys with unassisted support and drive a higher level of customer affinity to their brand.

Begin retail's digital journey

According to Arthur D. Little's international benchmarks, service providers' online sales (excluding SIM-only) account for only 10-20 percent of acquisitions. The role of retail stores in the customer purchasing journey therefore remains very critical, but needs to evolve to become part of a complete omni-channel customer engagement. In a world where service providers are focusing extensively on improving customer experiences and innovating in the areas of digital, having a cohesive strategy across retail and digital is crucial. With 83 percent of consumers unsatisfied with Web-to-store cross channel experiences, as found in a study conducted by Coleman Parkes on behalf of Amdocs, the stage is set for service providers to take the mantle and rethink the role of retail in their digital customer experience strategies. 

 

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