Over half of UK retailers are struggling to connect instore and online shopping

A study published by RetailMeNot has found that a significant proportion of UK retailers are struggling to integrate Omni channel sales with more than 92% of large retailers now trading online.

Findings include

  • 59 per cent are reported to be unable to link bricks and mortar sales with online sales.
  • 38 per cent fail to offer consistent pricing across all channels.
  • 90 per cent of retailers now sell online in the UK, nearly two thirds claim a lack of visibility across channels is the biggest problem they face.
  • 61 per cent of retailers claim their marketing budgets are still split per channel, as opposed to the 39 per cent who assign their budget to a fully integrated retail team.
The study uncovered that nearly half (42%) of UK retailers have restructured their business model to combine in-store and digital teams, in a bid to deliver a more consistent shopping experience. Nearly three quarters of retailers have stated they plan to increase digital investment. They are also pushing to gather customers email addresses online and in-store to link sales and provide a clearer picture of shopper behaviour.

Retailers are also turning to partners for assistance, with 71% of retailers are currently working on initiatives with third parties, such as unique vouchers and promotions, to gain greater visibility into the multichannel shopper experience. A further 57% of retailers are starting to make greater use of mobile vouchers and promotions to encourage online customers to shop in-store.

“Connecting the dots between online and in-store behaviour and sales is absolutely imperative, and holds the key to improving the shopper experience and maximising the effectiveness of investments in digital and mobile marketing and promotions,”

“With three out of five large retailers still unable to link in-store sales to online activity, opportunities to drive sales and strengthen brand loyalty are undoubtedly being missed,”

“To address this challenge and truly act like an omnichannel business, retailers should consider bringing together their in-store and online teams and calling on more of the expertise and support that partners can provide to connect the in-store and online shopping experience.” commented Severine Philardeau, VP of Retail and Brand Solutions at RetailMeNot.

Despite majority of retailers being aware that an omnichannel approach is needed, the research suggests that marketing budgets still tend to be stored between mobile, in-store and online teams.

In-store and online teams are integrated in many UK retailers (42%) in order to deliver a more consistent experience for consumers, and almost a third (30%) are in the process of unifying both retail teams.