Served from Blog


Is Digital Transformation working in the Path-To-Purchase Journey? – Part 1


It is a well known fact that the emergence of online shopping has drastically changed the way we shop and besides brick and mortal stores, online shopping plays a very important role for every brand…..

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Point of View


Lamps Plus : A Case Study-Led Approach to PLM Success


This report entails some key insights from the conversation between EKN’s principal analyst & CFO of a leading lighting retailer operating in US……

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Served from blog


2016 Wrap-Up & 2017 Retail Industry Outlook


While 2016 was a pretty good year for US retail, for most retailers a repeat of 2016 growth will be not be easy replicate in 2017. After all, it is a transition year and as new economic and fiscal policies get activated….

Read More

Point of View


The changing role of the store: Is your workforce ready?


Due to rapidly changing role of store on account of advent of disruptive digital technologies, retailers are contemplating or implementing store transformations and finding themselves in a tough spot….

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LATEST RESEARCH

Fashion and Apparel – Achieving a Frictionless Shopper Experience and Streamlined Operations

This ebook provides insights about the various changes and consumer demands that have affected the fashion and retail industry along with trends that are shaping and modifying it. It also discusses the continual increase in omnichannel sales that has forced retailers to take an active interest to create frictionless, omnichannel shopping experiences for customers. Download Full...

Lamps Plus : A Case Study-Led Approach to PLM Success

This report entails some key insights from the conversation between EKN’s principal analyst & CFO of a leading lighting retailer operating in US. They discussed various issues related to PLM and how software solutions are helping to overcome the challenges faced by them. It also discusses key pillars of the solution implemented and the ROI achieved from it. Download Full...

Point of View- The changing role of the store: Is your workforce ready?

Due to rapidly changing role of store on account of advent of disruptive digital technologies, retailers are contemplating or implementing store transformations and finding themselves in a tough spot to balance additional challenges associated with it. Such challenges get mitigated to a large extent with a dynamic and trained workforce. But, do retailers have a pool of such a workforce? This report takes an in-depth look at the changing role of stores and workforce and the difference that an empowered workforce can create. Download...

Retail Headquarters & Stores Collaboration: Looking Forward to Building Next Gen Retail Workforce

To balance an ever-increasing in-store activity, retailers are faced with the multiple challenges. One of the critical challenges which does not always find prominence is lack of collaboration between headquarters and stores which, often, makes the process of retailing even more complex. This point of view identifies the challenges faced by retailers and analyzes it from both the store and headquarters’ perspective. It also provides a prescriptive set of actions that retailers might focus on to address such challenges. Download Full...

El Corte Ingles: A Case Study-Led Approach to Supply Chain Success

This document entails some key insights from the conversation between EKN’s principal analyst & General Manager of a leading department store operating in Europe. They discussed various issues related to private label sourcing and how software solutions are helping to overcome the challenges faced by them. This reports also discusses some key KPIs which are vital in the sourcing process. Download Full...

A New Store Excellence Scorecard

To stay ahead, every detail of customer behavior and operations must be regularly monitored in real-time. While retailers say they are striving to improve store performance, the question remains, if they are evaluating themselves on the right set of parameters. This report will help retailers discover some new and upcoming KPIs and performance management strategies, which will help retailers address traffic volatility, increase inventory visibility, improve customer engagement, understand the path-to-purchase, reduce shrink, and better the employee engagement, assortment localization and overall operational performance. Download Full...

FROM OUR BLOG

Is Digital Transformation working in the Path-To-Purchase Journey? – Part 2

In our previous blog post, we spoke about the digital disruption of the path-to-purchase journey and how technology is affecting the way in which retailers operate, allowing customers to interact online, in-store, in-app, on-phone, in the cloud and via social media. However, the surprising fact is that in spite of the omni-channel retail experience being the strategic focus for many retailers, a large percentage of shoppers – particularly women and millennials still want an in-store experience. This is because women view shopping as a leisure activity for the purpose of entertainment and fulfillment besides need and utility, while millennial consumers want a touch-and-feel experience while they shop along with an equal affinity towards digital. EKN data shows that 75% millennials shop online and two-thirds shop in-store at least once per month. This shows that both digital and in-store affinity is prevalent among millennials. EKN’s Framework for Omni-channel Personalization data shows that 86 percent of consumers will pay up to 25 percent more for a better customer experience. But are retailers adopting the right measures to enrich the shopping experience for customers? Fortunately, the amalgamation of retail and technology has been an effective and positive one, and retailers are integrating innovative digital experiences at their physical outlets with the presence of digitized kiosks, touch screen navigation panels, interactive digital displays and other digital tools to ensure an engaging in-store experience. According to a survey carried out by Samsung, 94 percent of retailers believe the customer of the future will be driven by technology and 41 percent are already using it to implement a strategy to enhance the customer experience to...

Is Digital Transformation working in the Path-To-Purchase Journey? – Part 1

It is a well known fact that the emergence of online shopping has drastically changed the way we shop and besides brick and mortal stores, online shopping plays a very important role for every brand. But, is digital transformation based on what customers expect from companies or is it based on a tunnel vision of re-producing experiences that may not be relevant to the core customer base? EKN’s 2016 Profitable Omnichannel execution data indicates that only a third of retailers ‘occasionally” consider the customer perspective in devising omnichannel strategies. In today’s digitally connected age, it is a well-established fact that the internet has become an essential part of the path-to-purchase process irrespective of whether the purchase is made online or in a store. Social media is a large influencing factor for customers to make a purchase. From traditional modes of marketing and advertising on television, radio and print media, the path-to-purchase process has now undergone a digital disruption. Such a process often relies on pre-shopping activities like searching for products online, reading their reviews on blogs, forums and shopping websites and comparing them with other products available. The actual shopping transaction may be in store or via online shopping and the post-shopping activity consists of word-of-mouth recommendations, online reviews and social media posts. Thus, the process of buying has now become a merger of various online and offline activities. Shoppers can be categorized into three segments – ones who prefer shopping in physical stores, ones who prefer shopping online and ones that prefer shopping on both channels. Thus, retailers need to keep all three types of customers in mind....

2016 Wrap-Up & 2017 Retail Industry Outlook

While 2016 was a pretty good year for US retail, for most retailers a repeat of 2016 growth will be not be easy replicate in 2017. After all, it is a transition year and as new economic and fiscal policies get activated, some amount of business and consumer spending uncertainty is expected. The good news is that a relatively healthy GDP over the last couple of quarters and a largely stable housing market certainly bodes well for retailers early in the year. The key for retailers is to make sure that they absorb the policy change impact in the front half of the year without inflicting too much self-damage. Registering a bumper back half of the year through faster consolidation and slick execution is a must i.e. a robust Q3 & Q4 growth plan through proper customer segmentation, new product introduction and sound execution plans. Humbly stated, my own fiscal round-up for US retail in 2016 indicates medium to strong fundamentals across a majority of retail concepts or segments. According to U.S. Census Bureau’s latest reported retail sales data total US retail sales from September 2016 through November 2016 were up 3.7 percent from the same period a year ago. The 11-month non-adjusted total retail and food services sales were up 3.1 percent from the same period a year ago. While electronic, gasoline, general merchandise and department stores showed clear signs of a sizeable slump in comp sales; other store retailers including DIY/building materials, drug, and furniture reported healthy positive sales comps when compared to 2015. As expected, within the eCommerce channel, retailers saw the biggest gains as the...

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EKN is a boutique research and advisory firm focused on business-technology insights in the consumer industries of retail, consumer goods, travel and hospitality. Our goal is to fill a gap in the industry by offering prescriptive insights on topics of greatest importance to our audience, and to assist business and technology executives in discovering disruptive technologies and vendors.

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