At the beginning of this year, we carried out market research into the true state of eCommerce in the UK retail industry. Our analysis – conducted by third-party quantitative data experts, Vanson Bourne – canvassed the opinions of 100 senior eCommerce decision-makers.
The results make for sobering reading and highlight the four key problem areas retailers are faced with when investing in eCommerce projects: constantly wasted money, fuzzy project measuring, disappointing delivery, and lack of accountability – “it’s their problem, not ours”.
Far too often projects fail, and if we do not begin to address these issues directly and set out clear definitions of what success looks like – it becomes near impossible to predict how much valuable time and perfectly good money is being improperly used on an ineffective eCommerce project.
While many retailers are right in choosing to invest in eCommerce projects, it’s critical that they implement them properly to continue to move the business forward and grow the bottom line. According to our ‘eCommerce: The Cost of Missing Metrics’ report, retailers in the UK expect 30% of their eCommerce work to give them back no value. This alarming insight paints a very disappointing picture about the state of retail eCommerce in the UK, as far too few projects are truly satisfying businesses and customers alike.
As digital continues to revolutionise the way in which we shop, retailers are struggling to keep pace when circumstances change, and technological innovations or customer trends demand it. The current competitive climate presents a wealth of challenges, and it’s imperative that retailers adapt, otherwise they can face extinction, as has already happened to many high street retailers in recent years.
Furthermore, the study reveals that 99% of retailers are facing some sort of eCommerce challenge, with the main reasons being customer retention (41%), customer experience (39%), and thirdly, measuring metrics (33%). These challenges are causing UK retailers to experience many failed eCommerce projects as a result, with over two-thirds (68%) experiencing at least one failed project in 2018.
When it comes to measuring the success of eCommerce projects, the report finds that many key metrics are being neglected by retailers. Over seven in ten retailers (71%) are failing to measure ROI, almost half (48%) are not measuring customer retention, and 47% are failing to measure the impact upon revenue. It’s time for senior management to step up and ensure projects are thoroughly planned, implemented and the actual delivery measured properly. As the business cliché goes – what can’t be measured, can’t be improved.
At Greenlight Commerce we are dedicated to ensuring projects run smoothly, that’s why we’ve developed The Greenlight Code to address this market need. Far too many projects derail, but risk can be minimised if a measured and due diligent approach is taken.
To read the full study, download our ‘eCommerce: The Cost of Missing Metrics’ report to access even more stats and insights about the state of the UK retail sector.