Industry Insights

The IBM 2016 Global Customer Experience Index: How do you measure up?

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There are undoubtedly more issues that retailers must consider in today’s digital world than did the retailers of yesterday, but at the heart of these issues is one question – what is important to consumers? Over the past 6 years, IBM has answered that question and has now taken the conversation a step further – how well are retailers meeting these criteria? How are you measuring up to customer expectations?

Such was the aim of the IBM 2016 Global Customer Experience Index (CEI) – one of the most ambitious customer experience studies that IBM has ever conducted. The 2016 CEI surveyed 550 brick-and-mortar and pure play retailers spanning 8 different retail segments in 23 countries across the globe. The retailers were held against 49 unique criteria, each assessing different aspects of the digital-to-physical shopping experience from store associate performance to mobile engagement to order fulfillment. And, on the whole, retailers are achieving an overall score of 40 percent – a failing grade.

All of the 49 criteria upon which these retailers were evaluated could fall into one of the following four core competencies: consistency, content, convenience and context. For years, businesses have focused on the four Ps – product, price, place and promotion – but for a more holistic view on what is important to consumers, retailers must alternatively start looking through the lenses of the four Cs.

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There is room for improvement across each of these four Cs. Retailers are scoring highest in cross-channel consistency but are still only achieving a mere 49 percent. There is ample room for retailers to deliver engaging content to their customers, especially via mobile devices. Convenience is key for busy consumers, but only 55 percent of retailers are allowing customer to buy products online and pick up from a local store on their on terms. And, while retailers are now demanding more customer information than ever, they still struggle to deliver offerings that fit into specific contexts, such as personalized offers or marketing messages.

To stay afloat in an increasingly competitive retail landscape, your organization should consider partnering with a CEI expert to receive a presentation of the study tailored to your own competitive market, market segment, peer results and business model. If your organization falls under the 40 percent average, finding where you stand and where you can improve is even more of an imperative.

For more information on the top level findings and methodology of the CEI, please consider reading the executive summary or listening to this recorded webinar. For a tailored CEI presentation, please contact your IBM representative or Jill Hamilton at JillH@ca.ibm.com or ibm.co/1mDe54B.

Global Director, Distribution Sector Marketing at IBM

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