News & Views - Savantor

The importance of multiple channel offerings

Saturday, 09 May 2015
The latest figures from the IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index indicate that online sales grew 13% year-on-year in April. The results also show that mobile continued to drive overall online sales growth; the figures for April show that mobile sales increased 52% year-on-year and 8% on March. Meanwhile, the Halifax Bank has reported a "monumental growth" in mobile banking, with a 100% increase in the number of logins using a mobile in March 2015 (the Halifax mobile app was launched last summer). The Bank says that almost two thirds (64.6%) of all online banking logons are now being carried out via a mobile phone, compared to 26.4% for a desktop and 9% for a tablet. However, the Bank also makes the point that whilst the mobile or online banking approach is popular amongst its customers, most customers use all of the Bank's channels including telephone and branch visits. This can to some extent be seen as a similar to the retail sector, where although online and mobile sales account for over 11% of retail sales, it is the successful combination of offering both easy-to-use websites and bricks and mortar stores, which is proving a highly successful strategy for the likes of John Lewis, House of Fraser and Next, especially with their 'click and collect' services. Indeed, earlier this year, John Lewis announced its intention to increase the numbers of its stores by about 50% – to help its online sales. Examples such as this seem to underline the importance for institutions to be able to offer multiple service channels, including the 'standard' bricks and mortar approach, to satisfy their customers' needs. Whilst online and mobile seem set to dominate retail and banking sectors, nevertheless there is a place for other service channels to continue to be supported.
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