Omnichannel is all the buzz right now among consumers. Consumers are looking to shop anywhere anytime said Melanie Alavi, retail manager for UPS in an interview during IRCE2013.
Alavi discussed the results of the 2013 UPS Pulse of the Online Shopper survey which found that 47% of shoppers wound up going to store with a mobile phone and will have a coupon pushed to use the coupon in the store. Sixty percent of shoppers want to be able to purchase online and return items in store.
“More and more are looking for this integrated seamless experience,” said Alavi.
Seventy percent of shoppers prefer access to their favorite retailer online if they are already shopping online, according Alavi.
Alavi said merchants are asking UPS a lot about its technologies and how they can integrate the technologies to facilitate the omnichannel experience.
According to Alavi, returns are another area that has become increasingly important for shoppers. For example, last year only 63% of shoppers viewed online returns policy before making a purchase, this number jumped to 66%. In terms of people just making returns, 51% made returns last year and this year the number saw an increase of 62%.
“Returns are increasingly important,” said Alavi.
When it comes to returns during post-holiday, Alavi said, retailers need to make sure anything they do over the holidays, any policy changes need to be clearly laid out on their website. Alavi said providing a way consumers can easily print out a label to make a return or provide a label in the delivery are ways to make returns convenient for the consumer.
When it comes to ship-from-store, Alavi said it is an option for consumers that is here to stay.
“It makes so much sense for retailers to be able to optimize their inventory [and] minimize markdowns, it makes complete sense,” said Alavi.