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Most Retail CEOs Don't See Omnichannel Shopping Affecting Them. What Are They Thinking?

The technology-driven shift to omnichannel shopping is the most transformative change to hit retail in decades. Yet in a global survey of CEOs conducted by PwC, only 22 percent felt this monumental shift would impact their organizations. Are these retail CEOs missing the boat?

Most Retail CEOs Don't See Omnichannel Shopping Affecting Them. What Are They Thinking?

In the midst of this omnichannel transformation, most of the CEOs surveyed still seem to be focused on the traditional levers of growth. Their top three priorities all deal with expansion expanding into new regions or markets, expanding by opening more stores, and expanding through mergers and acquisitions. They appear to be fixated on the numbers at a time when success in retail is shifting to providing the best possible customer experience across channels.
Similarly, the top threats the retail CEOs listed were the traditional factors of increasing competitive pressure and margin erosion/cost reduction. Attracting and retaining customers, key issues in an omnichannel world, were farther down the list.

Perhaps most indicative of where the CEOs may be missing the boat on the new realities of today's omnichannel marketplace is their posture on supply chain. One of the biggest success factors in providing consumers the buy-anywhere, deliver-anywhere shopping experience inherent in omnichannel is having the new supply chain capabilities required to execute on this promise. But even though 74 percent of surveyed CEOs stated that supply chain is a high or top priority for their business, investing in supply chain ranked at the bottom of the stack.

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