The borders of the retail landscape are blurring more than ever. Moving from a company’s brick-and-mortar store to its online marketplace to its Instagram page, today’s consumers expect a seamless, unshackled experience that allows them to browse, buy, and receive their goods not just whenever but wherever, as well.
Slowly but surely, the world of commerce is beginning to catch on to this multichannel approach. About half of 500 top North American retailers said they will offer “start anywhere, finish anywhere” capabilities within five years, up from 3 percent today, according to a new report by Boston Retail Partners (BRP), a retail management consulting firm based in Massachusetts.
Indeed the push to unify online and offline channels has already begun: Roughly 27 percent of respondents have implemented the ability to “buy anywhere, ship anywhere,” up from 16 percent last year, BRP said.