Deloitte: Retailers need to get over their 'idiotic fear of mobile'

Deloitte: Retailers need to get over their 'idiotic fear of mobile'

Australian retailers’ “idiotic fear of mobile” will see them again become victims of disruption as the world re-platforms from web to smartphones, the founder of Deloitte Digital said.

At the reveal of Interbrand’s ‘Best Retail Brands 2013’ report in Melbourne this morning Deloitte’s Peter Williams said local retailers need to focus on mobile.

“Just whilst our Australian retailers – who have been pretty abysmal in e-commerce – are starting to invest gazillions of dollars into this stuff guess what?

 “The internet or the web ain’t really that relevant anymore.

“Because if you walk out on the street the world is re-platforming again on to smartphones.”

But Williams, chief edge officer at Deloitte's Centre for the Edge, said local retailers have an “idiotic fear of mobile” due to the over emphasis on showrooming.

“Somebody saw somebody showroom once and now they think everybody using a mobile is showrooming. But I’m not, I’m looking and sharing.”

“I went to a Masters store the other day and there was a big sign saying you weren’t allowed to use your mobile phone.

“Well why the fuck have you got QR codes everywhere? I just find it bizarre.”

Bricks-and-mortar retailers are also funnelling too much capital into the back ends of their e-commerce platforms, according to Williams.

Instead, retailers need to shift some of the spend to the front end and into places such as their in-store experiences.

“In Australia you have the number one market of individuals who can absorb technology in the world,” he added.

“The number one app downloaders per capita are right here, number one users of video online – right here and number one users of online banking are here.

“But we just do not see that happening in the retail space.”

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