2012 Global Cross Channel Retailing Report – US Retailers Lead

June 19, 2012

Retailers around the world, in mature and emerging markets, are enhancing their retail strategy and integrated digital operations in pursuit of cross-channel retailing. Ebeltoft Group’s 2012 global benchmark study measured leading retailers’ cross-channel capabilities. Walmart emerged as a global front-runner in the study, signaling the importance for all retailers to determine their own cross-channel plans. Despite the fast growing cross channel trend and retailers’ intent to deliver a well- integrated online and store shopper experience, the study shows that most retailers are immature in their ability to exploit this opportunity. Over time retailers will enhance their capabilities, customized to their market and retail sector.

Ebeltoft Group announces the release of its “2012 Global Cross Channel Retailing” report. This benchmarking study assesses customer facing cross channel capabilities of 144 leading retailers in 17 countries in 4 retail sectors: General retailers, Do-It-Yourself (DIY) retailers, Electrical Goods (Consumer Electronics) retailers and Fashion retailers. The study provides in-depth measures of retailers´ cross channel capabilities at global, country and sector levels. 47 cross channel indicators were measured, including click and collect (store pickup of online orders), store level inventory visibility, store associates online knowledge, mobile and social development.

American retailers emerged as global leaders in all four retail sectors. Walmart, Best Buy, Home Depot and Finish Line scored the highest among their global peers in their respective categories. Overall, US retailers showed their greater maturity with cross channel retailing.

However, this does not suggest that these leaders have mastered cross channel customer shopping experiences. A key finding and theme of the report suggests that retailers, even in more mature markets such as the US and UK, will need to develop new capabilities, and refine their execution over time. “Although American retailers are at the forefront of cross channel retailing, the capabilities measured in our report are quickly becoming table stakes for winning with the US consumer” says Mara Devitt, Partner at McMillan Doolittle. “Even the most advanced cross channel retailers readily admit they are just beginning their cross channel journey”. “As ecommerce grows in many countries, the strategic response for many leading retailers is to take a cross channel course of action”, says Jim Okamura, Ebeltoft Group US cross channel expert and Managing Partner at Okamura Consulting.

The complimentary 38-page report is available for download at Okamuraconsulting.com (here) and www.mcmillandoolittle.com. US retailers in the study include Best Buy, Walmart, Home Depot, Macy’s, Nordstrom, Sears, J Crew, Gap, Lowes and JC Penney. For a complete listing of retailers, click here.

Okamura Consulting focuses on retail strategy and cross channel integration. We align ecommerce and digital channels with stores and other customer touch points to enable each channel to perform optimally for the customer and our client. Our services include: cross channel strategic planning and organization design and International ecommerce expansion.

McMillanDoolittle, LLP is a retail consulting firm based in Chicago, IL. As retail experts, McMillanDoolittle has worked with many of the world’s leading retailers, suppliers and investors on retail strategy, concept design, customer experience, performance improvement and research programs.

Ebeltoft Group is a worldwide alliance of retail consulting companies with members operating in more than 20 countries in both mature and emerging retail markets.

Interested in further information, contact us:

Okamura Consulting
Jim Okamura (main author)

McMillan Doolittle
Mara Devitt

Ebeltoft Group
Lourens Verweij