As customer experience (CX) evolve into one of the essential aspects of every business, companies are slowly turning to omnichannel marketing as a crucial part of CX. The concept has gained prominence since 2019 as more businesses put efforts to remain at the top of the competition in meeting the ever-changing demands of modern customers. Gone are the days when a customer was left with only one choice to make between in-store purchases and online shopping. Today, businesses can combine all the interaction points of a customer into a single integrated customer experience, thanks to an omnichannel marketing strategy. This article highlights the impact of this concept on the retail industry.
Understanding Omnichannel Marketing
The world of digital marketing is never short of buzzwords, and the omnichannel concept is a trending one in the turn of a new century. This type of marketing refers to the creation of the presence of a brand across multiple offline and online channels in efforts to render an integrated customer experience. Some of the offline channels integrated include a physical store, call centre, events, and any brick and mortar setup. Online channels, on the other hand, include social media platforms, websites, emails, and mobile applications.
The Importance of Omnichannel Marketing for Retail Businesses
Adapting this strategy comes with plenty of benefits to a retail business. Here are some of the benefits:
• Frequent Purchases from a Customer
Customers who use multiple channels integrated into a single experience while making purchases are likely to buy products more frequently. According to a recent study, over 45% of clients who interact with a retailer across over ten channels make at least one purchase every week. Continuous purchases by loyal clients translate to more sales and profits for a retail business.
• Creation of a Positive Customer Experience
People are interested in a service that creates a positive experience across every phase of their purchasing lifecycle. For example, a client is willing to make consistent purchases from their favourite retailer if there is a solution to the challenges that come with having only one channel of customer experience. For example, making purchases from a physical store is linked to long queues during specified hours. In such a case, having a digital platform, where a buyer can pre-order items online goes a long way in enhancing positive customer experience. This is where the omnichannel strategy comes in handy. This strategy brings together e-commerce, traditional stores, and multiple channels into one integrated experience.
The Influence of the Omnichannel Concept on Various Industries
Key players in the various industries have implemented this marketing concept in their retailing strategies. This has helped most of these companies create a positive customer experience as well as raise their revenues in significant proportions. Here is a highlight of some of the influences of this strategy on the various industries.
1. Travel and Transportation
The journey of customers in the transport industry is always disrupted by such factors as delays and other forms of inconveniences. Fortunately, with the adoption of this strategy, travel companies can change customer experience as well as boost their revenues. The use of this concept in the transport industry enables service providers to send the best deals to their clients on hotels and restaurants prior to the client’s flight. Customers can book a flight and find a suitable restaurant at the same time. The travel industry can also adopt the omnichannel strategy to enhance online bookings and sending notifications to customers on their upcoming flight or booking.
2. Telecommunication Industry
Companies in the telecom industry can use this marketing strategy to enable clients to make bill payments and recharge other accounts. An omnichannel self-serve app, for example, enhances the customer experience by driving their engagement online.
3. Banking Sector
It is quite inconveniencing for clients to walk into a bank every time they want to make enquiries about their debit balance or pending bills. Using omnichannel marketing enables banks to notify their clients on such issues as account balance, latest credit, or even available deals and offers. Such notifications can be facilitated using SMS integrations. Click here for information on SMS integrations.
This marketing strategy may also come in handy in creating a seamless experience for users when opening a new bank account or placing a new request. Banks that have enabled clients to open new bank accounts via different devices and channels have experienced growth in their revenues.
4. Healthcare Industry
Although the healthcare sector has been highly regulated for years, the adaption of this marketing strategy has seen some players create a positive experience for their patients. Some of the possibilities that come with having this strategy in the healthcare industry include reminding patients of their appointments and sending them tips on how to improve their health. The strategy can also be used to enable patients to get access to their health reports via various devices.
Omnichannel Marketing Drivers in 2020 for Retail
Although this concept has been in existence in the retail space for years, the adoption of the strategy by retailers will be taking the industry miles forward in the new decade. Here are some of the elements of omnichannel marketing strategy that will act as drivers for most retailers in 2020.
• Semi-Automated Solutions
According to recent studies, the omnichannel retail platform of doing business is expected to grow spontaneously in the next three to five years. As a result, customer experience has become more complex, with a significant percentage of businesses adopting more channels for CX. With these changes, the need to acquire semi-automated solutions as a way of balancing between online and offline platforms will rise. The increased demand for semi-automated solutions will create a leeway for this type of marketing across the retail industry.
• Brand Intimacy
Brands are increasingly investing in understanding their customers as a way of building long-term customer relationships. Studies reveal that clients are after having an emotional connection with their favourite brands. As a result, companies are likely to humanise the interaction points across their channels to build an emotional connection with their customers. In brands’ efforts to enhance brand intimacy, the need for this marketing concept will grow.
• The Evolution of Brick and Mortar Stores
There have been predictions that the normal physical stores will fade off following the establishment of eCommerce platforms. However, the traditional store is likely to evolve into a top of the funnel. Marketers are keen to observe that the customer’s need to visit a physical store is growing spontaneously, even with the rise in eCommerce. This is out of the interest to sample a gadget, try out a designer’s wear, or just enjoying the fun of shopping in a physical store. Brands are, therefore, only left with the option of leveraging both eCommerce and traditional methods, resulting in the growth of the omnichannel marketing strategy.