Multi-location retailers have fast-tracked their digital transformations over the last two years, rapidly adopting digital-first strategies for brick-and-mortar businesses. With the increased need for alternative shopping methods like online ordering, curbside pickup, and at-home delivery, the retail industry saw the equivalent of 10 years of e-commerce growth in just three months.
As things return to normal, retail chains are luring shoppers with a hybrid strategy, combining online convenience and in-store shopping experiences. To compete in this digital-first arena, retailers need to ensure customer interactions are personalized, consistent, and omnichannel.
To make this happen, retailers need their IT departments to implement communications tools that support employees working in a range of positions across the organization — from the corporate offices and contact centers to the warehouses and retail floors. According to a 2022 report from TotalRetail and Napco Research, some retailers have already begun this process: customer service departments in the retail industry are seeing an increase in the amount of money spent on technology, second only to the amount spent on IT departments.
This is where you, as a trusted technology adviser, can help. This digital transformation presents the opportunity to advise retailers on the best solution to meet their individual needs: cloud communications technology. Cloud communications technologies should be at the top of your retailers’ shopping lists.
Rebound with Optimized Customer Interactions
Your multi-location retailers have built their brands by bringing quality goods and services into local communities. Their customers’ loyalty stems from a consistent and predictable in-store experience at every location, but all of that has changed — seemingly overnight — with the pandemic.
Now that the lockdowns are a thing of the past, retailers are no longer competing based solely on price but are now factoring in the customer experience. Consumers have grown accustomed to having service their way. In exchange for loyalty, customers expect a personalized experience that includes automatic product recommendations, customized promotions, and interactions with call center agents who know their names and preferences. This is where cloud communications technologies, like the one offered by Broadvoice, excel:
- Personalized interactions. To retain customers and reward their loyalty, retailers are looking for ways to customize promotions and offers while better supporting their clients. With Broadvoice b-hive for Salesforce, you can provide faster and more personalized interactions to your multi-location retail clients by integrating UCaaS with the popular Salesforce customer relationship management (CRM) software. Integrating with Salesforce allows retailers to have their inbound calls matched to customer records, and screen pops display those records on agents’ desktops so they can answer promptly with a personalized greeting and buyer history at the ready.
- Digital-first communications. In addition to online interactions, retailers are embracing text communications like those offered by Bubble by Broadvoice. Using text messages, retailers can send marketing promotions to entice purchasing, send shipping and delivery notifications, and facilitate two-way conversations for service and support. Plus, Bubble integrates seamlessly with Broadvoice b-hive.
- Responsive service. Today’s buyers expect to interact with retailers through their preferred communications methods — calling, texting, emailing, and voicemail. You can easily enable this omnichannel approach with Broadvoice GoContact, a contact center as a service (CCaaS) platform. GoContact enables agents to field all communication types from a single interface.
Cloud Communications Improve Employee Communications
While most retailers focus on technologies that enhance customer service, successful retailers understand that the employee experience significantly impacts the customer experience. Team members across the organization must be able to do their jobs efficiently so they can deliver their company’s promises.
This is an opportunity for you to help retailers improve their employee communications using cloud based solutions, making their jobs easier with features such as:
- Unified communications. A UCaaS solution like b-hive Communicator combines all communications tools — call, chat, video call, screen share, web conference, and more — in one app. Not only will employees be more efficient, but they will be more responsive to coworkers, suppliers, and buyers, which improves the overall customer experience.
- One number. A cloud communications platform assigns every employee a business number that serves as their identity for all communications — both inbound and outbound. Easily reach employees wherever they are, on any device, with b-hive Communicator. Having one business number means all communications stay in the business environment, where customer data privacy and security are assured.
- Mobility. With one number and one app, employees using b-hive Communicator can communicate with anyone, anytime, anywhere, on any device. This mobility allows them to be accessible and productive whether they’re working in the corporate office, warehouse, contact center, on the road, at home, or in-store. Sales associates can interact with customers visiting the retail location and use the mobile app to answer inbound calls and messages from remote buyers.
Multi-Location Retailers Must Adapt to a Hybrid World
The time to help multi-location retailers adapt to change is now. The 2022 Retail Technology Report advises retailers to accelerate their technology decisions in order to keep pace with the industry’s evolution. Indeed, data shows that buying cycles are shorter, and retailers are prioritizing speed and simplicity while also looking for tech vendors to partner with in this transition to a hybrid world. Broadvoice can help you bring the solutions and support multi-location retailers need to empower their employees and serve their customers in the digital world.
Watch this video to learn more about how Broadvoice can help your multi-location retail customers work smarter.