Cisco Blogs


Cisco Blog > Retail

How to Create an Omnichannel Strategy that’s Worth Celebrating

This holiday season customers have more ways to shop than ever before. Retailers are making it easier to get the right presents by providing enhanced delivery options – from buy online, pick up in store (BOPIS) to curbside pickup. While this freedom is empowering for customers, it creates a new level of complexity for retailers as seen by the hurdles experienced this holiday season. As this complexity becomes the new normal, the retailers that will thrive are those who deliver a consistent branded shopping experience across all channels.

No retailer has yet fully mastered the seamless omnichannel experience, but a few are well on their way:

Nordstrom gives customers access to advice from their favorite sales associate anytime through their TextStyle program. If a customer needs a personalized recommendation, a sales associate can scan an item, provide a photo and brief description, and send them a buying code via text. Once a customer types “buy,” the sale is charged to their preferred credit card and sent to the shipping address that’s on file.

Blog3_1

Kohl’s is seeing success with its mobile app which provides a consistent experience by allowing customers to access their virtual shopping bag, available loyalty points, and promotions while shopping in-store or online.

Coach does a fantastic job of integrating channels by allowing customers online to search in-store inventory in their area for the specific product they want. When a customer completes the purchase in store, the associate sends them a follow up email that includes personalized recommendations to encourage repeat purchases.

The shopping experience demanded in today’s competitive climate needs to be seamless. Retailers can be successful by creating one digital platform and pushing content and functionality across multiple channels, instead of trying to integrate a portfolio of different assets.

Blog3_2

One way retailers can start is to repurpose content from their online and mobile properties and bring it into the store using digital signage and tablets. This allows them to test which content increases conversions and apply changes instantly across multiple stores.

And content isn’t the only thing that can be duplicated across channels. Retailers can scale shopper engagement through digital experiences in the store. By using digital capabilities like remote expert, retailers can continuously offer high levels of service and expertise in a way that isn’t dependent on in-store staffing. Promotions can also be offered in real-time to improve conversion or maintain competitive pricing.

Blog3_3

Retailers should evaluate each step in the shopper journey and assess where digitization can improve the experience. They should also consider making use of the data that comes from digitizing those steps to make better decisions on what’s working and what isn’t.

While retailers have access to a mountain of data from online and mobile shopping journeys, they have a big opportunity to gather data from the in-store experience. Retailers will get a full picture of each customer’s journey when they combine data across all channels and build processes that allow them to deliver the right experience at the right time – whether shorter checkout, personalized assistance, or more relevant promotions. At Cisco we’re building the most advanced IOT solution in the industry by giving retailers access to information in the store that they can apply online and share across all channels.

What strategies do you think will be effective for creating seamless customer experiences? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

For more innovative retail strategies, see our Top 10 list of how you can create the ultimate shopping experience:

10 Ways Digital Technologies Can Create the Ultimate Shopping Experience from Cisco Business Insights

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Cisco Connected Health Summit at HIMSS16

Register now for Cisco’s 9th annual Connected Health Summit at HIMSS16 to hear directly from Cisco customers about new innovations in care delivery.

Cisco Connected Health Summit 2015

Cisco Connected Health Summit at HIMSS16
Tuesday, March 1, 2016
10:00 am – 2:00 pm (lunch included)
Palazzo Ballroom M-P

This popular half-day meeting, which includes a complimentary lunch, provides a forum for networking and best practice sharing unlike any other. Highlights will include:

  • Parkland Memorial Hospital: New $1B+ hospital in Texas with an integrated digital system controlling nearly every aspect of its operations and a focus on patient care using the Cisco Patient Connect solution.
  • Spectrum Health: Proactive telehealth program for early intervention and patient education with a focus on metrics and critical success factors.

Agenda at a Glance
9:15 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.: Registration and networking
10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.: Connected Health Summit Sessions (including lunch)

A detailed agenda will be available in early January.

The Connected Health Summit is approved for up to 3.25 CPHIMS and CAHIMS CE hours.

Employees of healthcare organizations may attend the Cisco Connected Health Summit at no cost by selecting this “optional event” when registering for the HIMSS16 Annual Conference or by adding it to their existing registration.

Prior years have sold out quickly, so don’t delay!

In collaboration with Intel®
Intel

 

Tags: ,

Gaining a Competitive Edge with Innovative Services

It’s been a few months since I took on the role of Chief Technology and Strategy Officer for Cisco Services. In that time, I’ve been inspired by the senior technical talent on our team and by the amazing ways we are helping customers.

Every day, our 30 excellent Distinguished Services Engineers (DSEs), Principal Engineers, and Principal Architects are embedded on the ground, on the road, supporting our account teams and building lasting customer relationships. Our Services Senior Technical Community does it all, from delivering integral pre-sales support to serving as virtual Chief Technology Officers.

It’s clear that technology is changing our world as everyone and everything becomes more digitized. And when it comes to our technologists, they are the “final frontier” for serious issues, instrumental to our success—and that’s just their “day jobs”!

Beyond the day to day, our senior technologists participate in community-sponsored programs that deliver high value in and out of Cisco. For example, Cisco Services has a Distinguished Discussions program, where our technologists present internally to our engineering community. While this program has been around for some time, it is now being leveraged externally as part of the Technical Knowledge Library’s biweekly educational seminar series offered to customers to further their success. Read More »

Tags: , , , , ,

Make Some New Friends: Jimi Hendrix and Customer Experience Part 2

Do the names Linda Keith and Chas Chandler ring a bell? Well, without their influence, we may have never heard of Jim Hendrix.

In May 1966, Keith ran into the then-obscure Hendrix playing at the Cheetah club in New York.  “He was astonishing – the moods he could bring to music, his charisma, his skill and stage presence,” she recalls. “Yet nobody was leaping about with excitement. I couldn’t believe it.”

HENDRIXKeith convinced Chas Chandler to come see Hendrix on August 2, 1966 in Manhattan. Chandler was the bass player for the hit group “The Animals” at that time. “He was the best guitar player I had ever heard.,”  Chandler would later comment of the performance. Chandler became intent on making Hendrix a star – but to do that, Hendrix had to go to a new place to start fresh – the U.K.

Successful customer experience for contact center directors also means going to new places – organizationally. The contact center is a critical cog in the “Big 3” of customer engagement, where the propensity of customer interactions (vs. transactions) occurs between the web, the mobile device, and the contact center.  In contrast, many businesses are not organized holistically across these three critical elements. And on occasion, each domain architects conflicting business outcomes.

Leading companies view the customer journey as a singularity from a mobile, web, and contact center perspective. Managers of these domains are beginning to exist under common organizational designs. Many are beginning to report into chief experience of digital officers.

Much like Jimi Hendrix needed to make some new friends to achieve success, so it is in business. If you’re operating in isolation, expand your organizational boundaries if you haven’t yet. Make some new friends in your mobile and web application teams. Customer experience stardom may be right around the corner for you also!

Discover more about how Cisco’s customer experience offerings can help make music for your customers here: http://www.cisco.com/assets/sol/coll/use_case_tool/outcome.htm#~customersatisfaction

Tags: , , , ,

Mortgage Lenders Imperative – Engage Millennials

I am a millennial and my entire financial life fits in my front pocket.

Whether I am setting up automatic credit card payments, paying a friend back for a dinner he paid for, making my monthly rent payment, or buying the latest Wall Street darling stock; it can all be accomplished with four or five taps on my smartphone.

Since the advent of the iPhone in 2007, the app economy has flourished, and now there seems to be an app for everything. This is particularly true for the financial services industry. There are apps for banking, investing, measuring net worth, tracking expenses, processing payments, and for things that probably neither you nor I have even thought of yet.

This trend has spilled over from the world of simple financial transactions to the complex financial world. Exemplifying this perfectly is the astounding success of Quicken Loans, which has grown to become the third largest United States mortgage lender (by volume) after adjusting its strategy in the late 90’s to become a direct digital lender. And as you may have guessed, they have an app for that. Read More »

Tags: , , , , , , ,