The pandemic has accelerated innovation and digital transformation BUT the key to success of implementing these changes is having a seamless & connected customer experience.
According to Steve Lamar from AAFA: "seamless integration is really becoming the rule, it used to be the exception and we’re going to see a lot more of that.”
It's important that a retailer insists on a seamless end-to-end process and experience, from merchants in the back office, a sales person's buy-in on product selection and their visibility to inventory, and especially from a customer's perspective who is shopping across platforms.
My shopping experience a few days ago:
I bought some ink at Staples on Friday, shopped online, picked up curbside.
GREAT experience. Yay #BOPIS!
But I had bought the wrong ink and I have emailed them 3 times with no response (there was no other way to request a return/exchange).
Cover all bases, do not leave a loose end like a communication breakdown push your customers away.