The rise of the digital transformation is placing more and more channels at your disposition to offer your company’s products and services. As a consequence, if you want to offer an optimal user experience to all your customers, you will have to monitor the service they receive at each one of the points of contact. That is what is known as an omnichannel strategy.
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What is an omnichannel strategy?
In the past, monitoring your customer’s journey was very simple. They saw the advertising for your products or services in the traditional media like the press, radio or television and, if it interested them, they bought something. In the event of a question, they simply called customer service. However, everything has become much more complicated with the appearance of digital media.
Currently, social networks, websites and blogs have become the leading channels for getting information about different products or services. In addition, the process of conversion is gathering more and more force in e-commerce and less at the tradition points of sale.
With this variety of customer service tools you need to establish a homogeneous strategy and unified way of collecting and storing information on potential customers from different channels. This is exactly the main difference between an omnichannel strategy and a multichannel one.
While a multichannel strategy focusses on the different ways of reaching the customer, the omnichannel one places the customer at the heart of the strategy and looks for a way to communicate interactively and dynamically in order to get to leads. It is important to offer them a good user experience, beyond the way in which they contact your company.
The main benefits the strategy offers you
One of every two consumers uses two or more channels to communicate with a brand before making the decision to buy or not. However, this trend has been growing over time. Your company needs to create an omnichannel strategy that offers attractive experiences to consumers at each point of contact, and in this way, obtain their loyalty.
If you follow this notion, applying this kind of strategy will produce numerous benefits for your company. The main ones are the following:
- This kind of strategy will allow you to have an overall view of all the interactions that your customers are having with your company. In this way, you can create a proper customer journey offering them personalised service at every stage of purchase.
- You will be able to guarantee homogeneous contact across different devices. Perhaps the first contact is made from a mobile phone and the following one is from a computer. Whatever it is, 90% of consumers will expect a similar interaction no matter what the channel used.
- It will allow your consumers to have updates on the status of their order in real time. Once someone buys a product from your online store, they like to know where it is logistically up to its arrival at their home.
- In general, omnichannel strategies revolve around the digital environment, but good planning will allow you to reach the offline world from the online one.
- That will allow you to increase the number of sales from your store and improve the conversion rate not that you can follow up personally with each consumer.
How to build an effective omnichannel strategy
As a general rule, an organisation has between three and 20 tools to use in contacting its customers and the market in which it carries out its business activity. All these data are generally stored on different platforms, so it is fundamental that you be able to integrate them onto a single one for proper analysis and decision-making.
The latest study of the IDC indicates that omnichannel consumers generally have 30% more lifetime value, than those who buy via one channel only. So it is fundamental for building loyalty among your consumers. Nevertheless, there are entrance barriers with which you must deal, such as consumer privacy and the security of their data.
In order to build an omnichannel strategy that is effective, different departments of your company like marketing, products, sales and customer service must be led by the hand and integrated. The first step is conveying the objectives and goals your strategy must have in order to plan joint actions which follow the same line. The objective is managing to get a consistent experience aligned on the different platforms where the consumer can find your products.
The cases of Disney and Starbucks
The main example you can find as a point of reference is Disney, given that it takes care of its customers from their entry in the company’s website until they finalise their experience in the amusement parks. The UX experience on its website is unbeatable, but things don’t stop there. If you decide to reserve your journey to one of the Disney parks, you can begin to use the “My Disney Experience” tool where you will be able to organize your whole journey, including lodging, restaurants and even the “Fast Pass” to avoid standing in too many queues.
Once in the park, its app allows you to locate the different attractions and see the estimated waiting times in order to choose the one that is shorter. You will have bracelets known as “Magic Bands” which will allow you to open your hotel room, order room service and even save the different souvenir photos you can have taken with the various Disney characters. On every platform you will always find a similar, personalised message.
In addition to Disney, Starbucks’s customer loyalty application is another clear-cut example. You will get a free customer loyalty card you can use for each of the purchases you make. One of the main advantages is that you can recharge it via any channel, be it the app, the website or in person at a store. Any change you make is updated on all the channels in real time. As a result, if you realise when you are in the queue that you don’t have any credit, you can recharge it then and there and use it without any problem.
In conclusion, the use of a good omnichannel strategy will allow you to improve customer loyalty and sales in the medium and long term.
Do you want help in creating an omnichannel strategy for your business?
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