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Retailers are Prioritizing a Unified Commerce Experience for their Customers

According to RCP's 24th Annual POS & Customer Engagement Survey, 80% of retailers have ranked growing and enhancing digital commerce as their top business priority. Change is the one constant in retail, and even though in-store, physical retail remains the dominant sales channel, how and where the consumer prefers to shop continues to shift, with online and in-store experiences blending into one another. Phygital, omnipresent, digitalization, and omni-channel are all terms used to describe the rapid ascension of Unified Commerce, and retailers are prioritizing their investments and offerings to create the most seamless customer experience possible.

However, achieving a truly seamless experience comes with challenges as over 70% of retailers surveyed indicated that reducing the friction of existing store fulfillment for digital sales was a top customer engagement priority this year. A key component of reducing this friction involves inventory visibility, and RCP Managing Partner John Eagles comments that “many retailers have struggled to gather a truly accurate pulse on what inventory exists in stores and distribution centers, keeping it updated throughout the day, and sharing that information with the customer in real-time.” To help combat that issue at the store level, 54% of retailers surveyed indicated that enhancing order management capabilities and real-time product visibility was a top POS priority. Furthermore, the next highest priority for store systems also deals with order management, with over 50% of retailers citing plans to refine store order orchestration and improve omni-channel capabilities to provide greater convenience and brand differentiation to their customers.

Having a 360-degree view of a customer across all channels can help in-store retail associates provide a more personalized shopping experience.”

— Brian Brunk, RCP Managing Partner

Moving beyond fulfillment capabilities, retailers also recognize that being able to have omni-channel access to customer information is essential for providing true unified commerce customer engagement. Having that 360 view of the customer across all channels can help in-store associates provide a more personalized shopping experience, which is a top Customer Engagement priority for over half of the retailers surveyed. RCP Manager Arjune Ramdan adds, “a robust Customer Relationship Marketing (CRM) solution and Single View of the Customer (SVC) platform creates a comprehensive database of segmented customer information that can drive relevant promotions and enhanced engagement to serve the customer more intimately and theatrically.”

The survey and its analysis dive deeper into where retailers have prioritized their investments and Managing Partner Perry Kramer suggests that retailers should "future-proof their technology solutions by focusing on open integration standards and microservices which provide the greatest flexibility and extensibility for more effectively scaling and more quickly adding capabilities than traditional legacy applications.” Implementing solutions that are built on modern technology architectures will also allow retailers to seamlessly transition the customer experience across POS, mobile devices and e-commerce platforms.

This year's survey was sponsored by Tulip, Aptos, Aurus, Havis and Verifone. To download RCP's complete 24th Annual POS and Customer Engagement Report, visit:

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