Suzy Ross is a senior adviser at Accenture
One hundred years ago – prior to the industrialisation of retail – every retailer was by definition what I call a ‘customer-keeper’.
Barely 10 years ago, consumers were delighted with twice-yearly, end-of-season Sales. Fast-forward to today and there seems to be a never-ending cycle of price reductions – ever-earlier seasonal Sales, continuous ‘promos’, discounting disguised as loyalty programmes, Black Friday, Cyber Monday… the list goes on.
Loyalty programmes have had a bad press of late. More and more customers have come to see them as uneven exchanges of information.
There’s no doubt that retailers across the UK are navigating very stormy waters. The ability to shop anytime, anywhere, anyhow has changed consumer behaviour more profoundly and rapidly than ever before.