Soccer team in a huddle

The Omnichannel Experience Comes of Age at EuroShop

Feature Article | February 21, 2017 by Andreas Schmitz

At the EuroShop 2017 trade fair, SAP will demonstrate how online and physical retail can be seamlessly connected to give customers the best-possible personalized shopping experience.

A recent PwC survey on the status of digital technology in the retail sector reveals a problem that is currently holding many European retailers back. Fewer than one-fifth of them possess the technology they need to offer a true “omnichannel experience”, in other words, a seamlessly integrated customer journey spanning multiple retail channels. And only eight percent of retail enterprises say they have the analysis capabilities they need to generate new revenue streams from their customer data. For many retail companies, therefore, the prospect of offering an integrated, end-to-end omnichannel experience is still pretty remote.

SAP’s Motto for EuroShop 2017: “Your Customers Are Live. Are You?”

Recognizing the retail sector’s need to tackle the omnichannel challenge, SAP’s program for the international EuroShop trade fair at the beginning of March features an on-site use case and a slew of presentations and roundtable sessions designed to demonstrate how an end-to-end omnichannel solution for retail might look and the steps required to implement one.

Use Case: Sports Equipment Retailer

SAP’s on-site use case mimics a real-life scenario. A customer is planning a trekking vacation and spots a rucksack she likes in an online store. But she’s unsure and would like to take a closer look at it before deciding if it’s the right one for her. She also needs hiking boots, a rain jacket, and a selection of food to eat on the move. So she accesses the store’s customer app to reserve the rucksack for collection in-store and compile a shopping list. When she enters the store, both the rucksack she reserved online and a personalized shopping experience are waiting for her: In-store promotion screens draw her attention to current offers that match items on her shopping list, while the customer app guides her straight to the products she’s interested in. What’s more, if she has specified in her profile that she suffers from a nut allergy, for example, then the system automatically ignores products containing nuts – like muesli bars – or warns her if a certain product carries the risk of an allergic or intolerance reaction.

But it’s not just customers who benefit from this seamlessly integrated flow of data. A dashboard shows store managers which products are selling well, which shelves or racks need filling, and where customers have left items of clothing in changing rooms.

PwC: Strategy for 360-Degree View Hot Topic in Retail

According to PwC’s analysis, devising a strategy for the kind of customer journey described above is on the agenda at four out of five retail companies. So corporate leaders are clearly taking this topic seriously. At the same time, a third of companies say they are still grappling with a strategy for building a 360-degree view of the customer, and almost as many again have a strategy they describe as “needing improvement”. Others won’t even begin implementing a strategy for another year or two.

Presentations at EuroShop 2017

Various specialists from SAP and its customers will provide tips on plotting out and implementing a strategy for a customer journey that is both well thought-out and seamlessly integrated. These are some of the topics they’ll be addressing:

Your Customers Are Live. Are You?
March 6, 11:00 a.m.: SAP’s Hannah Bartkowiak will explain how SAP Hybris Marketing helps companies get a deep understanding of customers’ needs and create a personalized, real-time shopping experience.

SAP & Hybris Omnichannel Commerce at a Glance
March 6, 2:30 p.m.: Dr. Ingo Woesner, global director of Product Management Retail Omnichannel, SAP SE, will explain what omnichannel means for SAP and how software from SAP and SAP Hybris interact.

5 Good Reasons to Plan Your Future Retail Business with SAP
March 7, 2.30 p.m.: Andreas Wormbs, chief strategy advisor for Retail, Wholesale, and Fashion at SAP, will present SAP’s portfolio for the retail sector, look at how offline and online business can be connected to best effect, describe what the latest merchandise management systems are capable of, and elucidate the benefits of moving to the cloud.

SAP Retail at Alnatura
March 8, 11:00 a.m.: Emanuel Berger, head of IT systems at German organic store chain Alnatura, will report on his company’s successful implementation of SAP for Retail and on the benefits it is enjoying as a result.

To see the full list of presentations scheduled for March 6-8, go to the SAP website for EuroShop.

One-on-One Meetings with SAP Experts

SAP is also offering attendees the chance to meet with SAP experts in person during the event. The main themes for these meetings will be:

  • SAP S/4HANA Retail, SAP’s new-generation retailing system
  • SAP Exchange Media for personalized advertising
  • SAP HANA Cloud Platform: use cases for the Internet of Things in retail
  • In-store processes and ways to connect online and in-store shopping experiences

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