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Think Ahead, omnichannel???

Things have undoubtedly been difficult for the retail industry over the last eighteen months, especially for those who don't have a digital footprint.

Customers have been forced to adopt digital platforms, be it in e-commerce (Flipkart, Amazon), service aggregators (#urbancompany), FnB (Swiggy, Zomato). A majority of these habits would have long-lasting ramifications. There should be an objective analysis by the brick-n-mortar operators on how this change in consumer behaviour would affect them; and where they invest.

While there is a lot of noise around an #omnichannel approach, the method cannot be limited to opening a web store or rolling out a consumer app. Tata Group's bringing together #Infinityretail (Croma, Infiniti Retail Limited) and #TataUnistore (Tata CLiQ) might look like the most logical transition, operationally, however, it's an ocean to bridge.

The task is no easier for Reliance Retail. Reliance Digital Retail Ltd. is amongst the largest technology retailer in the country; in contrast, the Reliance Digital app on Google Play struggles with a 2.6 rating and does worse on the Apple AppStore with a rating of 2. This underlines the lack of understanding of the digital space and the expertise to crossover the reef.

A larger problem, however, would be in aligning the operational metrics like Cost of Acquisition, retention, remarketing and Life Time Value of customers. While these form the fundamentals of modern-day e-commerce, with the exorbitant cost and transactional nature of LFR's, these parameters would be hard to access and implement.

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