On the surface, retail appears to be a relatively straightforward vertical.
Consumers want a product or good. Retailers have it. A bilateral exchange happens, and—presto! The retailer receives money; the consumer receives their product or good. The only communications that occur are the interactions between the seller and the buyer.
However, brick and mortar stores and face-to-face interactions aren't as ubiquitous as they used to be. Whether online or on the telephone, more and more B2C interactions are occurring virtually. And while this is ultimately good for consumers, it can put businesses in a tricky position. Communication inefficiencies result in more time spent navigating systems and software, which results in less productivity, which results in less sales. It's a chain reaction that ultimately results in bad experiences for both parties.
Yet with this conundrum comes good and bad news. The good news is that unified communications can solve many of these issues. The bad news is that unified communications is far from ubiquitous in retail—in fact, many retail executives are unaware of its benefits, or even its existence.
Here are seven statistics that show the state of unified communications in the retail industry.
1. 73 percent of business calls head directly to voicemail, resulting in angry customers and wasted time for business owners. (B2C) (Tweet this)
2. Identically, 73 percent of return calls are also routed directly to voicemail. (B2C) (Tweet this)
3. Slow adoption of unified communications isn't a decision based on cost-benefit analyses; rather, it's one borne from being uninformed, as 69 percent of retailers are unaware of what unified communications is. (Retail Week) (Tweet this)
4. The above statistic might explain why just 13 percent of retail executives have implemented unified communications throughout their organizations. (CBR) (Tweet this)
5. Voice response systems—which are an advanced versions of auto-attendants—can reduce the amount of time customers spend on hold up to 15 minutes per day. (Wavelink) (Tweet this)
6. Organizations who implement unified communications can see a 2800% improvement in collaboration—and given the importance of teamwork in retail verticals, it's helping employees to do their jobs much more effectively. (B2C) (Tweet this)
7. Unified communications can save 100-employee organizations up to 191 hours per day. This suggests that there's significant potential that hasn't been unlocked in the retail vertical. (Wavelink) (Tweet this)