Email remains the leader among retail brands both in Europe and the U.S., judging by Shifts In Retail: How Digital Acceleration Changed the Industry, a global study by cloud communications platform Infobip.
Of companies polled, 62% of those in Europe and 54% in the U.S. see email as one of their most important consumer channels, beating phone (60% in Europe, 54% in the U.S.).
That choice is important as brands gear up for digital transformation and people start slowly returning to normal.
Not that retailers are all feeling great. They say they have been affected by these issues during the pandemic:
In addition, 42% had to fast-track digital transformation projects, and 32% add that self-service operations have surged in popularity.
But only 34% U.S. firms agree that digital transformation projects had to be accelerated — for 38% of these respondents, the biggest challenge was the fact that agents were forced to manage more customer channels than before.
Also, there was less agreement on the increase in online shopping, with respondents citing hikes of anywhere from 10% to 50%.
Infobip surveyed 250 respondents. Of those, 46% are in Europe, 36% in North America, 18% in South America, 12% in the UK and 10% in Central America. U.S. participants make up 27% of the total.
Here are the strategies brands have employed during these challenging times:
Again, the increase in digital spend was cited by 53% of European brands and 46% of those in the Americas.
Here are the KPIs brands cite as critical to their 2021 strategy: