It is no longer sufficient to limit oneself to a simple web store. Today, customers expect a consistent customer experience across their entire customer journey across all digital and physical touchpoints.
The current trend topic in modern retail is connected retail - a combination of e-commerce and brick-and-mortar retail. One example of this is "click and collect", which became popular during the pandemic.
The "Connected Retail 2022" study by the EHI Retail Institute showed that retailers now offer or are planning to introduce a wide range of such connected retail services.
Some examples of connected retail are:
- Real-time display of stock available in stores in the online store.
- Instore Order - the order is placed in the store and the items are delivered to the customer
- Click and Collect with in-store payment
- Click and Collect with online payment
- Click and Meet - online arrangement of consultation appointments in the store
- Instore Return - return of items ordered online in the store
- Ship from Store - delivery of articles ordered online via the store
In addition, customer behavior is changing all the time, and constant change characterizes retailing in the digital world as well. For example, for many years, the leading payment method in e-commerce for German customers was purchase on account. According to the study "Online Payment 2022" by the EHI Retail Institute, however, this changed in 2021 - the payment service Paypal has caught up significantly. In terms of percentage share of e-commerce sales, purchase on account (28.3 percent) and payment via Paypal (28.2 percent) are now almost on a par. As recently as 2020, the ratio was 30.4 to 24.9 percent.