Future of Retail: Using Technology to Create a Winning Customer Experience

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Sunny Dhami talking about the future of retail

Last week, RingCentral joined 100+ exhibitors at Retail Retreat & Expo 2019 in Dublin. The event was hosted by Retail Excellence, a non-profit company which supports and includes over 1,850 leading retail companies who operate in the Irish market.

Over 2,000 senior retail industry executives attended what’s been called Ireland’s flagship retail event. RingCentral were exhibiting for the first time, jointly with WorkAir, a partner in Ireland. At the event, we discussed how UCaaS technology can help progressive retailers deliver an excellent customer experience, joining the dots between bricks & mortar and digital retail.

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Challenges facing modern retailers

“Technological and demographic changes are reshaping the shopping experience,” said Sunny Dhami, Senior Director of Product Marketing and GTM for RingCentral in EMEA during a seminar which was filled to capacity with Ireland’s top retailers keen to understand the future of retail and how a modern communications platform can increase employee satisfaction, customer satisfaction and ultimately, company profitability.

Today’s retailers have a lot to consider with modern customer’s behaviour changing due to digital transformation, and expectations being higher than ever before. Online retail sales have increased by 15.3% in the last year, and online sales have grown at ten times the rate of store sales. This is a trend that is only expected to increase. Research shows that only 23 percent of UK consumers enjoy the shopping experience in stores. As a result, 37.5% of UK shoppers now start their product search online, and 28.5% now shop less in store. Other challenges include:

Research shows that only 23 percent of UK consumers enjoy the shopping experience in stores. Click To Tweet

Communication preferences have evolved

Customer service is key to survival in the competitive retail industry, and customer experience and technology investment is the key to growth. To best deliver this, it is important to understand customer expectations:

  • 72% of customers expect to use their favourite social channel to engage with brands
  • On average, customers will use 7 channels to engage with brands
  • 68% of customers would switch to a competitor if they think you don’t care about them
  • 88% of customers feel frustrated by having to repeat their issues multiple times
  • 94% of customers expect that they shouldn’t have to repeat themselves across channels
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Empowering agents with the right technology is crucial in being able to address these needs to create amazing customer experiences. According to a global survey of 2,000 knowledge workers by CITE research, 9 in 10 employees believe a seamless communications platform that lets them interact with both customers and colleagues improves both employee and customer experience, leading to company profitability.

RingCentral has been helping retailers, like La Redoute, overcome many of these challenges.

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    Sahil Rekhi is a natural technology evangelist, focussed on driving and enabling business transformation via technology. As the Managing Director for RingCentral EMEA, he is responsible for growing the RingCentral business across EMEA through direct sales, channel partners and strategic carrier partners. Having been with RingCentral for the past 5 years, Sahil has been responsible for launching and driving key strategic partnerships, growing the EMEA business and telling the RingCentral story globally. Sahil has been an industry veteran with 10+ years of experience in the telecommunications and technology industries having previously worked for Vodafone on Group strategy and the launch of FMC and UC services internationally.

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