According to the study, many retailers have "dedicated time and effort into being 'customer-obsessed.'"

Just released research from Forrester Consulting (commissioned by cloud marketing firm Listrak) found that retailers who deployed marketing technology (or “martech”) often don’t achieve the results they expected. Authors of the report found that retailers were essentially “leaving money on the table” because they were too busy focusing on the bells and whistles of the martech instead of the outcomes.

Listrak said the study was done to better understand the “origins of the disconnect between retailers’ customer-obsessed marketing efforts and their actual business outcomes, particularly as it pertains to the evaluation, purchase and utilization of martech.

“We’ve performed revenue gap analyses for thousands of retailers,” said Ross Kramer, chief executive officer of Listrak, “and in comparing performance versus potential, time and again we saw that many were leaving money on the table. We wanted to know why, and asked Forrester to validate and investigate this phenomenon.”

Forrester polled 200 North American e-commerce and marketing executives from retailers with annual sales of between $100 million and $5 billion. Online consumers were also surveyed.

The authors said that many retailers have “dedicated time and effort into being ‘customer-obsessed’ — using data-driven insights and engagement to provide meaningful experiences and increase lifetime customer value.” But their research showed that while 94 percent of respondents believe that their company “truly embodies customer obsession, only 18 percent are seeing the revenue growth they expected from those efforts.”

Listrak said the study also showed that the “ability to improve business outcomes factors remarkably low when it comes to making a martech investment, and shockingly, only one in five respondents rank business outcomes as the most important factor in selecting a martech solution.” It added that features and functionality were ranked “consistently higher.”

Subsequently, Forrester said retailers need to “align features and functionalities to business outcomes to close the opportunity gap at their next martech solution selection.”

Kramer said the study “answered a lot of questions and validated a lot of our own findings. Retailers need to hold their martech solutions accountable. They can have all the features and functionality they want, but unless they tie those directly to business outcomes, they’ll fail to deliver on customer obsession.”


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