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Amazon Tracker: Strategies And Partnerships Deliver

PYMNTS – In this week’s tracker, Amazon slowly spreads into trickier territory: prescription pharmaceuticals, smart glasses, and shipping alcohol (which is a logistical nightmare). It’s also made progress through the more traditional method of partnerships, though its most recent choices may not be what you’d expect. Finally, not every retailer can be Amazon, but they can all learn something from the eCommerce giant – here’s what.

51 percent of retailers say they offer same-day delivery. One year ago, that percentage was only 16. Boston Retail Partners (BRP) is attributing the shift to Amazon Prime, which, by dominating the retail landscape, is forcing competitors to keep up or give up. Autonomous delivery and distribution may be the next step, BRP predicted.

Retailers would do well to emulate Amazon in some other areas, too, according to BRP: namely, personalized service, ubiquity (omnichannel), and a unified brand experience across those channels.

Read Full Article: Amazon Tracker: Strategies And Partnerships Deliver

51pc of retailers already offer same-day delivery, with more to come

Luxury Daily – Same-day delivery and other fulfillment features will be key to the future of luxury retail. As customers become increasingly reliant on the conveniences of modern technology, more than half of retailers currently implement same-day delivery and more are expected to do so within two years, according to a new report from Boston Retail Partners.

Boston Retail Partners surveyed retailers to gauge their thoughts on the state of digital commerce in 2017. According to the report, quick and autonomous fulfillment is the next step in modernizing the digital retail landscape.

The modern consumer expects a certain level of digital compatibility from the retailers they shop. This extends from basic things such as having a consistent experience across digital and physical channels, to other features such as a robust delivery and tracking service. Same-day delivery is one of the hottest trends in this area, with many retailers planning to implement it in the future or already having it as part of their services.

Read Full Article: 51pc of retailers already offer same-day delivery, with more to come

Retailers triple same-day delivery options

FoodDive – Retailers have tripled their same-day delivery options over the past year, according to the 2017 Digital Commerce Benchmark Survey from Boston Retail Partners. Fifty-one percent of retailers currently offer this service, up from 16% last year.

Sixty-five percent of retailers report they will offer same-day service within the next year, according to the survey. Brands will also be exploring autonomous fulfillment, self-driving vehicles and “helper robots” to speed up delivery.

“With Amazon offering same-day delivery in some markets, the push is on for retailers to get items delivered to customers as soon as possible,” Jeffrey Neville, vice president at BRP, told Chain Store Age.

Read Full Article: Retailers triple same-day delivery options

More Retailers Offer Same Day Delivery

Convenience Store Decisions – Digital Commerce Survey shows autonomous fulfillment is next step on delivery path. It’s no secret that delivery is growing as a consumer demand across the country.

According to a new report from Boston Retail Partners (BRP), consumers expect quick access to products and most retailers are now responding by offering same day delivery. Currently, 51% of retailers indicate they offer same day delivery, up from 16% last year, and within two years 65% plan to offer this service. Delivery via a third party service, such as Uber or Lyft has also increased (from 20% last year to 32% this year) as retailers look at different ways to offer customers the flexibility to shop, purchase and receive their goods on their own terms.

“With Amazon offering same day delivery in some markets, the push is on for retailers to get items delivered to customers as soon as possible,” said Jeffrey Neville, vice president at BRP. “Autonomous delivery and distribution are the next step with self-driving vehicles soon a reality and a few food delivery start-ups already testing the concept.”

Consumer behavior and mobile technology are dramatically changing the traditional retail model. Amazon continues to disrupt retail as it delves deeper into brick-and-mortar with the acquisition of Whole Foods. Meanwhile, bankruptcies and store closures make daily headlines, as the phrase ‘retail apocalypse’ becomes the topic of many conversations. These developments dictate retailers’ necessity to adapt to the new customer journey to accommodate the blurred lines of retail and innovative methods of shopping driven by mobile technology, artificial intelligence and rapidly changing fulfillment methods. To succeed, retailers may need to reinvent themselves to create an effective blend of the physical and digital worlds to maintain customer loyalty.

Read Full Article: More Retailers Offer Same Day Delivery

Same-day delivery services tripled in a year

RetailDive – More than half (51%) of retailers say they now offer same-day delivery, up from 16% last year, and within two years 65% plan to offer it, according to the “2017 Digital Commerce Benchmark Survey” from retail management consulting firm BRP.

Third-party delivery, through the likes of Uber or Lyft, has also increased, from 20% of retailers offering that last year to 32% doing so this year, according to the report.

The movement in same-day delivery is driven by customer expectations for a personalized, seamless experience, BRP said in a press release. Nearly half (49%) of retailers will offer customers the ability to “start anywhere, finish anywhere” within five years, while more than half (54%) of retailers surveyed by BRP said that creating a consistent brand experience across channels is a top priority. More than a third (38%) of retailers also said that improving personalization is a top priority.

Read Full Article: Same-day delivery services tripled in a year

Amazon Pushes Retailers To Same-Day Delivery

PYMNTS – In data that will likely surprise anyone who has avidly watched retail over the last few years, the market is trending strongly toward same-day delivery. According to the “2017 Digital Commerce Benchmark Survey,” conducted by Boston Retail Partners (BRP), some 65 percent of retailers will offer same-day delivery within the next two years.

As of today (Sept. 19), the numbers are fairly impressive. After all, 51 percent of retailers say they offer same-day delivery, a massive jump from the 16 percent offering it only a year ago. Increasingly popular and helping to make those same day deliveries happen, third-party apps like Uber and Lyft have moved up from 20 percent of the same-day market to 32 percent in the last 12 months.

And the forecast, according to BRP, is for increased innovation in same-day delivery as merchants attempt to stay competitive in a landscape that is, at present, highly dominated by Amazon.

“With Amazon offering same-day delivery in some markets, the push is on for retailers to get items delivered to customers as soon as possible,” said Jeffrey Neville, vice president at BRP. “Autonomous delivery and distribution are the next step, with self-driving vehicles soon a reality and a few food delivery start-ups already testing the concept.”

Read Full Article: Amazon Pushes Retailers To Same-Day Delivery

Key stats you need to know about today

eMarketer – Instant Gratification: Amazon has clearly shifted consumer expectations for fast delivery of goods bought online. Boston Retail Partners (BRP) found that more than half (51%) of retailers in North America now offer same-day delivery, more than triple the number that did so last year. And nearly two-thirds of retailers plan on offering same-day service within two years.

Read Full Article: Key stats you need to know about today

Number of retailers offering same-day delivery triples

FierceRetail – Same-day delivery is a growing demand from consumers and is now offered by 51% of retailers. This number has tripled in the past year, up from 16%. According to a new report from BRP, as many as 65% of retailers plan to offer this service within the next two years.

In an effort to smooth out the process, the number of third-party delivery services has also increased to 32%, up from 20% last year.

“With Amazon offering same day delivery in some markets, the push is on for retailers to get items delivered to customers as soon as possible,” said Jeffrey Neville, vice president at BRP. “Autonomous delivery and distribution are the next step with self-driving vehicles soon a reality and a few food delivery start-ups already testing the concept.”

According to the Digital Commerce Benchmark Survey, other imperatives beyond same-day delivery include improving personalization. In fact, 38% of respondents indicated that personalization is a top digital priority.

How are retailers moving along the personalization experience? A lot are testing out artificial intelligence (AI). Already many retailers started integrating machine learning into their organizations and 56% plan to utilize AI within the next five years. Other innovations include voice technologies, such as Amazon Echo, virtual reality and augmented reality. Nearly half of retailers, 46%, plan to implement augmented reality in the next five years.

Another priority is creating a seamless customer experience across channels. 49% of retailers will offer customers the ability to start and finish their shopping journey anywhere within the next five years. This includes starting on any mobile device and finishing with same-day delivery or pick-up in store. And mobile’s role in the process will continue to grow, as 41% of respondents said that improving mobile shopping is a top priority.

Read Full Article: Number of retailers offering same-day delivery triples

Target Testing Next Day Delivery

RIS News – Under pressure from e-commerce giants Amazon and Walmart, Target is testing a next-day home delivery service called Target Restock. Amazon, which offers rapid delivery services like Prime Now and Amazon Pantry, recently said it cut the threshold for free shipping to $25 from $35. Walmart previously dropped its free-shipping minimum to $35 from $49.

Target plans to pilot the new service with shoppers this summer in the Minneapolis area. Once the pilot is live, Minneapolis area shoppers that have a REDcard will be eligible to access thousands of household essentials online. They will be able to fill a box with multiple items and have their orders shipped to their homes for a low, flat fee, although there are no reports yet on what that fee will be. Target said it will be able to fulfill orders placed before 1:30 pm by the next business day.

“Today’s consumers expect everything right now!” Ken Morris, Principal, Boston Retail Partners (BRP) told RIS News. “Amazon and Walmart are raising the bar by continuing to offer faster delivery options – even same day. This move by Target to offer next day delivery is a direct response to competitors’ offerings – they need to do it. Target will also need to add fresh, refrigerated or frozen foods categories to next day delivery to be on par with Amazon and Walmart.

Target said the items for Target Restock orders will be packaged at a nearby store, essentially turning local stores into omnichannel  warehouses.

“Target seems to be playing catch-up instead of leap-frogging the competition,” said Morris. “Perhaps moving to same day within a reasonable proximity of their store locations and adding auto-replenishment services for products that are purchased regularly might be a better strategy. Another good strategy would be to offer an enhanced loyalty program, similar to Amazon Prime, that offers compelling benefits like free delivery and premium benefits that increase customer loyalty for products they can purchase from many other sources.

“While this is a good move for Target, competitors are upping the game which will continue to put pressure on Target and others to find ways to offer faster delivery services and other conveniences that make shopping and buying easier,” said Morris. “Retailers selling commodity items have a challenging road ahead.”

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Finding Win-Win

Frozen and Refrigerated Buyer – What makes a good trading partner? Manufacturers can start by taking a more customized approach to each retailer.

Unlike those youth sports competitions where everyone gets a trophy, the grocery game often produces clear winners and losers. Thanks largely to consolidation that’s created increasingly powerful retailers, suppliers are the ones that usually take a licking. But so-called “partnerships” that keep one company on the verge of bankruptcy aren’t good for anyone — even retailer winners. In order to succeed in an increasingly competitive marketplace, they need strong partners that can help them get ahead.

In fact, says Ken Morris, principal at Boston-based Boston Retail Partners, when they make an initial pitch to a new buyer, smart manufacturers will focus more on the benefits of the business relationship and less on product attributes. “While making the product compel- ling to the retailer is important,” he explains, “it’s even more important to demonstrate how you can add value to the supermarket’s business or make their operations more efficient and easy.”

“Good suppliers share insights that help retailers improve product forecasts and make smarter decisions around purchase volumes,” says Morris. “They also help retailers minimize out-of- stocks with insights into delivery schedules, the impact of the manufacturer’s advertising and promotions calendar and enhanced forecasting data.” An extranet that enables efficient data sharing between retailers and manufacturers is an invaluable tool, he adds. And manufacturers would be smart to stay on top of RFID technology.

Already prevalent at the carton and pallet level, RFID will eventually move to item level as well, allowing real-time visibility of inventory, reports Morris. What better way for suppliers to help their retailer partners reduce labor costs and improve inventory planning?

Another increasingly important manufacturer role revolves around food safety. Recalls are costly not only in terms of dollars and cents but reputation, so more and more chains are looking for suppliers that have not only taken steps to prevent them in the first place but also have a well thought-out, immediate action plan in the event one is required.

“In addition to improving their own production and distribution processes,” continues Morris, “Manufacturers can help retailers by providing guidance on food safety practices and technology that can track products and monitor temperatures to ensure the cold chain isn’t broken.” Because no matter which company is at fault, a recall hurts both partners.

Read Full Article: Finding Win-Win (page 36-39)