Omnicommerce was supposed to make everything simpler — from maintaining inventory to ensuring access to the right product at the right time for the consumer. Multi-channel retailing was supposed to solve the problems of retail's past. Predictably, though, a new study says that it's created just as many problems for the present and future.
A recent report from Retail Systems Research (RSR) found that 50 percent of retailers cited increased pricing awareness among consumers as a key challenge of their brands moving forward. Despite what some might see as a glut of resources available to merchants, just 35 percent say that they have strategies in place to manage omnichannel promotions and pricing strategies, and it's this lag between what's possible and what's practical that Paul Rosenblum, partner at RSR, fingered as the culprit for many retail headaches today.
“Back in 2012, we began expressing serious concerns about both strategies and tactics, but retailers seemed convinced they could win the race to the bottom on price, or at least, by participating in the race, they could stay in the game," Rosenblum said in a statement. "Fast forward to 2016, and retailers are now starting to feel the negative impacts of their past pricing decisions. Consumers may be sensitive about price, but no retailer, not even the lowest-priced retailer, can win on price forever.”
While retailers might be struggling to find the perfect pricing strategies across all channels they sell on, it might be just as well for the ones they do employ to not cause any serious harm to customer loyalty. However, less than half of businesses surveyed claimed such confidence, and just 23 percent said that their pricing plans are directly contributing to higher sales.