SOTI answered the question: “What do consumers expect from the digital transformation in retail?” The survey revealed three expectations, but these expectations do not align with the challenges retailers are currently facing.
Retailers looking to tinker with a better customer experience in the coming year have three opportunities to make this happen, according to SOTI. That is the conclusion of the study titled ‘Consumer Demand for Digital Transformation in Retail’. First, they can bring AI tools into the shopping experience. Next, optimizing the supply chain is a good plan. Finally, they best tinker with the security of technologies.
Regarding the latter aspect, consumers appear to be concerned. “More than three-quarters worry to some degree about the use of devices in stores because of the lack of trust in retailers.” Consumers question retailers’ handling of their privacy and the financial security of technologies.
For the opportunities surrounding AI, the survey also looks into self-service checkouts and handheld scanners. Both of these were found to have improved the shopping experience for over 40 percent of shoppers. A minority of 15 percent say the shopping experience has deteriorated for them. Customers denounced the lack of staff when problems with such technologies occur.
Supply chain: opportunity and challenge
While supply chain optimization is an opportunity for retailers to take the customer experience to the next level, Carl Rodrigues, CEO of SOTI, also notes it is a pitfall for retailers. Nearly 75 percent of customers say they want to know where their ordered package is at any time. Slow delivery, moreover, can cost a retailer customers: more than 60 percent of those surveyed said they prefer the store with the shortest delivery time.
Other challenges retailers currently face include the lack of data on devices present in the workplace and the high costs associated with operational efficiency, according to Rodrigues.
SOTI offers the solution to these challenges. For example, there is XSight to gain insight into where packages are located and supplier inventory management. All the solutions get combined in SOTI ONE, a total solution for managing enterprise devices, collecting data from them and creating new applications.
The survey took place during the first weeks of September 2023. At that time, a questionnaire was submitted to 11,000 consumers. These consumers came from nine countries, including the Netherlands, France, Germany, the UK and Sweden.