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Retailers are interacting with customers via an ever-increasing number of touchpoints. The addition of social media and mobile devices to the traditional physical and virtual retail platforms has created an evolving consumer practice of using several such "touchpoints" in the course of a single purchase (the "omni-channel”). The difficulty of providing high levels of customer service has increased with the necessity of managing multiple channels under the retailer’s control and coordinating formally or informally with touchpoints not directly within the retailer’s own operations. Multiple sources of potentially conflicting information (e.g., order fulfillment) can lead to miscommunication, and thus poor service experience for customers. The purpose of this paper is to describe two preliminary studies that explore how well retailers are prepared for this increasing complexity via a content analysis of retailer website language regarding customer service policies. Implications of our findings and recommendations for further research are then discussed.


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