Monday, January 14, 2013

NRF Annual Conference 2013: mapping the consumer purchasing journey

Retailers are looking forward to the NRF Annual Conference, 2013.

Many of them are thinking about this question:
  • Is there a better way to conceptualize, record, and intercept touch-points (and map so-called moments of truth) in the consumer purchasing journey?
For a very long time, many (most) of us in digital analytics would use the term 'bricks and clicks' as an actual divide between digital experiences and retail experiences. Digital was confined to the desktop. And then the in-store kiosk (maybe). And we analyzed ecommerce flows in ways that varied a bit from practice to practice[1].

Most consumer experience analysts argued that there was only one consumer moving through multiple channels, and that the divide among channels was arbitrary. There was a real problem that retailers, on the ground, could see.

Until, that is, smartphone penetration made it visible.

And now that consumers are carrying computers that fit into their pockets, right into the store, and are completing purchases...right in the store...it's a visible problem.

The reason for caring about this question are rooted in the problem of showrooming.

There are a few promising presentations on the agenda:
  • Some are suggesting that we leverage BIG DATA ANALYTICS to drive insights.
  • Some argue that it is all about OmniChannel architecture. (A consumer-centric approach to multiple channel.)
  • Some are arguing that there's a long standing problem with search and classification in the first place. 
  • Some are about how new payment technologies help. 
  • Some are all about mobile.
A few brave souls, without actually using the word, are alluding to information asymmetry between consumers and retailers. There's little doubt that it's finally having an effect. There's even evidence that it has big effects on loyalty and retention.

If you're there, I'll see you there. If you're not, I'll write what I found.

***

I'm Christopher Berry.
Find out how I build recommendation engines at Authintic.


[1] The same 25 or so metrics are used across many ecommerce operations. The degree to which some are 'key' performance indicators is variable.

1 comment:

Mark Dykeman said...

Wish I was there. Keep us up to date - MD