If you’re in the retail sector you’re probably continually looking for new ways to get ahead of the many competitors you have, and to increase your sales and profit levels, get more customers, increase productivity, and just generally build your business.
To do this, it always pays to stay up to date on the latest retail trends that can affect your industry and your own venture. One particular word that you should read up on and consider is “omnicommerce.” Also referred to as “omnichannel,” this buzzword refers to a type of retail strategy that involves delivering a seamless experience for customers through every available shopping channel. If you’re keen to know more, read on for the lowdown on omnicommerce today.
What Does Omnicommerce Mean?
The term omnicommerce is created from the mixture of “omni”, which comes from a Latin root meaning “all” or “everywhere”, and the word “commerce” which, as you can probably guess, refers to shopping.
As such, omnicommerce is about delivering an all-encompassing customer retail experience through the many different kinds of shopping channels, from e-commerce and bricks and mortar stores, to mobile applications and social media platforms.
To run an omnicommerce-style business, you need to focus on your customers and on making their browsing and buying experiences engaging, simple, and fun, whether they’re interacting with your brand online, in a physical store, on their smartphones, or in another way. It involves integrating all of the possible touchpoints and platforms where consumers can come in touch with a business, rather than purely delivering through one particular retail channel. You must be present across all points where your customers may be, and as a result available to serve consumers at any point along the way in their journey to make a purchase.
Why Omnicommerce Came About
Omnicommerce really came about because of the rise in big data. With data becoming so prevalent over recent years because of technological advances, it is now quicker and easier than ever for businesses to access information about current and potential customers, and to get a more overarching view of consumers’ wants and needs and shopping habits.
With zettabytes of data flowing around the world now, most of which can be processed, stored and analyzed, brands are able to predict and understand shopping trends, and consumers, in a way that just wasn’t feasible decades ago. The popularity of social media networking sites such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat, and the rise in e-commerce and the use of mobile devices for research and purchases, also means that there are even more ways for shoppers to be targeted and understood.
The Benefits of Omnicommerce
There are a number of benefits to be gained from implementing an omnicommerce strategy for your business. For starters, you can better serve customers (which leads to more sales, repeat business, and referrals) by providing them with a comprehensive, and integrated, experience as they shop. You can make it simpler for them to get access to the types of products and services they want, when they want them, and in the manner that suits them.
Another benefit of omnicommerce is that, by targeting customers at multiple touchpoints, you allow shoppers to interact with your brand more, and to become more involved and engaged as a result. In turn, consumers will likely feel more loyal to your company over the long term.
Your marketing and sales campaigns can also benefit from running an omnicommerce business. This is due to the fact that this retailing strategy involves streamlining your efforts across different platforms and touchpoints (i.e. your branding and messaging will be the same across social media sites, in-store campaigns, online advertising, e-newsletter mail outs, website content, and the like).
As such, you should find that your efforts aren’t scattered at all, but rather coordinated, cohesive and focused, and more effective as a result.
How to Run an Omnicommerce Business
When it comes to running an omnicommerce business, it is important to continually analyze all your various marketing, sales, and customer service funnels, across all the different touchpoints where customers can come in contact with your brand, to ensure consistency and a first-rate experience for people.
As the lines between bricks and mortar and online sales continue to blur, and the lines between digital and in-person customer relationship management, it is necessary to focus on each step of the buying experience. You must make each point along the way quick, easy, convenient and as personalized as possible for consumers so that the total experience fosters brand loyalty.
Remember that getting a final transaction completed with a customer is about much more than just how they pay you for the goods or service you supply — it is about what the experience has been like for them from the time they first came across your brand, to the present moment. It is also about the follow-up support and interactions that you have with them too.
While each business will have a different way of going about their omnicommerce strategy, the end result — an optimum customer experience every time — is the key.
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