Uh oh, Mercury is in retrograde again. And as the ruler of all types of communication, selling, buying, transportation, shipping and travel, Mercury’s backspin can mean serious consequences for related industries, including retailers and e-commerce from July 26 to August 19. Whether you buy into this astrology or not, out-of-stock products, incorrect orders and delayed shipping are a headache for everyone, and it’s only made worse if it’s matched with terrible customer service. That means retailers must find a way to ensure customer needs are met, which is where implementing technology like sales enablement solutions can come in handy.
To align the stars and deliver a well-coordinated commerce experience, retailers need to have in-depth customer data, and the ability to access and use it immediately during sales or service interactions. Since Mercury rules the transmission of information, it’s imperative to be extra careful when sending important data like customer information which can be tricky for retailers still struggling with siloed systems and separate processes for each of their channels.
Delivering an uneven customer experience from one channel to the next is exactly the kind of celestial chaos Mercury’s retrograde can create and does not fare well in producing the type of customer loyalty they need to survive in today’s market. Adopting sales enablement platforms can unify activities by gathering and blending data from multiple sources, and calling up other, contextually relevant and appropriate content. These platforms give sales and service people easy access to all the data they need on customers and products to facilitate positive interactions across all channels.
To further complicate things, Mercury’s backwards travel can impact on not only technology but communication. With social media and mobile devices dominating the retail space as one of the most commonly used ways to consume information and share opinions, many retailers could run the risk communication breakdowns and lost sales opportunities.
To avoid the ramifications of retrograde, retailers need to improve their communication with customers and create new, two-way interactions that foster engagement, improve the customer experience and ensure greater loyalty. This requires retailers to listen to customer needs and respond to them in smart and timely ways with the right content to make these conversations interesting and helpful. Providing sales people with the information needed right at their fingertips via their mobile devices, allows them to pull up relevant content so they can instantly share and discuss it with the customer. Ideally, by integrating communication tools, retailers will be able to smoothly interact with customers, despite any cosmic intervention.
Ultimately, utilizing sales enablement solutions will help retailers to catch up and keep up by bringing the right data and content together at the right time, to deliver superior service and avoid disaster. With better, faster ways to communicate and share information, sales, merchandising and marketing teams can work together more efficiently to solve problems and make improvements to differentiate the customer experience and ensure shoppers (and sales goals) are not affected during Mercury’s retrograde.