Last night’s lavish – there can be no other word for it – Internet Retailing awards at SushiSamba atop the Heron Tower (which boasts Europe’s highest balcony) certainly show cased how the cream of the e-commerce industry gets things done.
Congratulations then to all the companies shortlisted for their leading role in e and m-commerce (Winners in Bold):
The Innovation Award presented by Steve Dukes, Head of Paylater
Commended winners: Burberry, Made.com, M&S, Top Shop
The Omni Award presented by Sam Suder, Senior Account Manager at Portaltech Reply
Commended winners: Oasis/Warehouse, Debenhams, John Lewis, Tesco
The M-Retailing Award presented by Lorraine Howard, Retail Operations Director of NoNeed4Mirrors
Commended winners: Amazon, Debenhams, Domino’s Pizza, Ebay marketplace, Net a Porter group
The IRIS Award presented by Dan Mortimer, CEO of Red Ant
Commended winners: Apple, Burberry, Dixons, M&S
The Customer Award presented by Allyson Tremblay, UK Sales Director of SDL Fredhopper
Commended winners: House of Fraser, John Lewis, Lakeland, Lovehoney
The Capability Award presented by Bas Nawijn, Head of Sales EMEA of Magento
Commended winners: Amazon, ASOS, B&Q/Screwfix/Tradepoint, John Lewis
The International Award presented by Patrick Wall, CEO of MetaPack
Commended winners: ASOS, Net a Porter group, Wiggle, Zalando
The Global Award presented by Terry Hunter, CEO of Tryzens
Commended winners: ASOS, H&M, Net a Porter group, Tesco
The Internet Retailing Award presented by Eric Abensur, CEO of Venda
Voted by the readers of Internet Retailing – Lovehoney
The Judges’ Award presented by the Judges’ representative
Chosen by the judges – ASOS
(Full report on the awards to come when the rest of the team have sobered up).
But while much praise must be lavished on the winners and the runners up in each category, the evening, for me, was far more interesting thanks to the chit chat as the sunset on the city. Here I was regaled by tale after tale of how retailers simply aren’t joining the dots and delivering the kind of omni-channel experience that shoppers want.
And the problem? Well, most retailers are too departmentalised and the web-team don’t talk to the POS team who certainly have nothing to do with the store teams. Everything from payments to experience are not centralised enough and so commonality of experience an the ability for the consumer to move across channels seamlessly is crucial.
One retailer who shall remain nameless told me how the staff can check on stock levels using smartphones, but a consumer hitting the website can’t. Two different databases and networks, see. This is madness.
As the news this week shows – and, to be fair, much of the chat at the awards did too – mobile is becoming evermore important to every facet of retail, driven largely by consumers who are now more tech savvy and experience savvy than they have ever been. Yet most retailers aren’t capitalising on this. I know that a lot of work is going on and that the autumn and run up to Christmas will see some big announcements, however, right now the consumer is being failed.