I usually skim Flipboard daily, keeping up with the latest news in marketing (as a wise marketer should). One article that caught my eye, was about the biggest mistakes that retailers make when merging their store and online experience. I know, this article isn’t about tech. But as a consumer of products and avid shopper (Target seems to get all my money these days), it’s interesting to see the struggles that companies face in truly becoming an omnichannel organization.
That Target app on your phone that shows you which store has that bookshelf in stock AND allows you to order it via drive-up? Well, that cost millions to implement. What makes it easier for Target in comparison to other retailers, particularly smaller ones, is having the resources (time and money) to make one. Not to mention, they have a customer base that is willing to educate themselves to use the application, which is probably the hardest part of all – customer adoption.
Merging the in-store experience with online is hard for many companies that are operating on legacy systems, or just underestimate the amount of work that goes into these applications. And unfortunately, retailers are soon going to have no choice but to foray into mobile app development because eventually, mobile will run the world. And not only will there have to be apps or integration of mobile payments in store, but a seamlessly integrated experience between them all. It’s definitely eye-opening to see how the omnichannel experience has shifted to mobile and the reality of integrating a digital experience with brick and mortar stores.