With the daily use of mobile devices and the expansion of eCommerce, both interactions with customers and the whole purchase process have been transformed. Nowadays, hyperactive and hyper-connected consumers check prices, compare products, solve questions, and look for recommendations on Google and social networks before buying. They switch from one channel to another using various devices and technologies. And although at the end of the process the purchase occurs in a physical store, they will have carried out an exhaustive preliminary investigation.
To continue to grow and survive, brands have to open to a range of channels (both digital and IRL) and rethink their commercial strategy so as to be "everywhere" in the most efficient way, along with the client.
What Is An Omnichannel Strategy About?
When multichannel provides a basic solution to customers either via digital or traditional media – each one operating individually and in an uncoordinated manner – an omnichannel strategy puts the user experience and interfaces (UX/UI) at the very centre of everything. In its most common definition, omnichannel is the ability to offer a uniform and consistent experience through all channels, while taking into account the different devices that consumers use to interact with their eCommerce. More simply put, it integrates all the touch points of the brand (email, apps, web, call centre, social networks, mobile, point of sale, etc.) so that any interaction with a customer can smoothly begin in one channel and end in another.
For example, with an omnichannel strategy, you can check a product on a website, buy it in a mobile app, pick it up in a store, and also have your points automatically updated in real time on a digital loyalty card when paying at the cash register.
It can also happen that a customer sees a product in a physical store, scans the code with a mobile, saves it in a wish list, and then completes the purchase from the app before going back to the store to pick it up. Later on, they will receive a message with offers related to the purchased product, and the cycle will start again. In the end, omnichannel re-connects the physical and digital stores… and the full customer experience is integrated and uninterrupted!
What Are The Benefits Of An Omnichannel Strategy?
- Greater Efficiency
An omnichannel strategy ensures that all departments in a company have a complete overview of the customer. It forces us to accelerate the automation of internal processes in order to integrate and centralise all the information (while at the same time avoiding having to review hundreds of details by hand, omissions, stock or shipping errors). It also allows any department involved in the commercial relationship to access a single database.
In addition, the claimed message is unified and the customer service is streamlined. Last but not least, it provides accurate and highly useful business metrics from different angles (distribution, logistics, etc.).
- Greater Customer Satisfaction and Engagement
Omnichannel management generates consistent content across all channels, conveying trust. In addition, being based on a broader understanding of the customer, the model increases the ability to respond efficiently to needs – such as solving a specific problem. It improves the communication between the two parties and also the user experience, whatever the channel of interaction with the brand. By feeling properly heard and considered, that same user will be more likely to become an attractive spokesperson later on.
- More Income for the Company
The informational capacity of an integrated system facilitates the calculation of the correct discounts on the products, thus increasing the profit margin. In addition, it allows the executive board to analyse and adjust promotion policies, with a more global than local approach.
Why is Omnichannel the Right Strategy for Companies to Adopt?
The future of sales stands in making each user a special one, and an omnichannel strategy approach fosters personalisation. Interaction with customers through a system of channels managed and monitored in an integral way generates a flow of information of great value. With this data, behavioural trends can be identified and basic models created to implement more individualised and relevant proactive digital marketing actions.
In conclusion, omnichannel is becoming increasingly important in the market. The advantage is huge for the user and it has very positive repercussions on the company as well (even if managing a client in reality in continuous evolution, accompanying them wherever they are in a fluid and relevant way, remains a tricky challenge!). Getting to know the audience, understanding behaviours, preferences, consumption patterns and expectations not only implies the technical need to integrate systems or channels, but also the know-how to use technological tools and skills (data analysis, machine learning, AI, etc.). It requires a high level of expertise that can be found by working with specialist agencies, such as ZeroGrey
– which in recent years has successfully implemented omnichannel strategies for several leading local and global brands.