NewStore’s 2023 Omnichannel Leader Report assesses brands’ omnichannel competence

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While NewStore has championed the brands that have invested in technology in recent years as businesses adapt to uncertainty and constant change, NewStore’s 2023 Omnichannel Leader Report shines a light on the changemakers who have invested in both in digital transformations and in forward-thinking teams of people who have the courage to create a better future.

To determine the current state of omnichannel retail, its progress, and the availability of critical solutions and services across all branded channels, NewStore’s report examined over 300 leading luxury, premium, and lifestyle brands. The comprehensive assessment included a team of mystery shoppers to audit each brand’s online, mobile app and in-store shopping experience to assess omnichannel competency.

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Hibbett Sports led the way as the first omnichannel retailer. The company underwent a complete digital transformation in 2017 after operating only in physical locations for 70 years. The report’s authors note that Hibbett Sports has used its late arrival in e-commerce to its advantage, launching its online business with proven omnichannel capabilities and true optimization rather than implementation.

Shoe Carnival, Bloomingdale’s, Sephora and Lululemon followed Hibbett Sports in filling the top five omnichannel leaders on NewStore’s report. While Shoe Carnival succeeds in delivering “wow” moments, Bloomingdale’s has found its way onto the list of investments that have improved the way the retailer puts customer experience first. Sephora’s technological advancements were also touted, with the report’s researchers finding each innovation to be useful technology. Likewise, Lululemon has continued to evolve through investments that have supported its goal of building community and relationships.

Key findings from the report also include the growing popularity of Endless Aisle, which has seen a 315% increase in brands offering the technology today (54% of brands now offer Endless Aisle). Curbside collection, however, is on a downward trend, seen at just 25% in 2022 compared to 34% in 2022, down 30% from 2021.

Reviewing this year’s research results as well as reports from recent years, NewStore notes that while retail has seen “the worst” recently, more industry disruption is inevitable and brands will need to continue to invest in a scalable business model. The report’s authors urge all brands to consider in 2023 whether there are changes that can be made instead of suffering the inevitable.

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