There’s no doubt that marketing is one field that has gone through tremendous changes. One thing that is attributed to this is technology, which has dramatically affected the consumer behaviour.
Unlike in the past when everything was straightforward, things are now unpredictable. It is quite difficult to foretell the behaviour of a consumer these days where e-commerce is the order of the day. Some years back, a customer was required to walk into a store and purchase an item. Nowadays, people can buy whatever they want from wherever they are, with the help of a Smartphone, tablet, laptop, or even a desktop.
What is Omni-Channel?
The omni-channel is an approach that aims at giving buyers a smooth experience when they are making online purchases regardless of the channel they are using. Whether a customer is using a desktop, mobile phone or even physically visiting the store, they should not be subjected to any hardships that can intimidate them to abandon the process midway. As a marketer, you know how bad it is for a potential client who had an intention of purchasing an item from your website leaving without making any beneficial move. The individual could entirely drop the cart or even buy the products elsewhere.
Omni-channel bridges this gap and ensures that the purchase is made fast and easy. No beating around the bush or sticking to other unviable activities. According to research done by Zendesk, about 87% of customers go to brands that offer them a seamless and uninterrupted experience. This applies to all online businesses, regardless of what they sell.
Omni-Chanel marketing also gives the consumer a chance to engage with the sellers directly through physical stores, websites or mobile apps.
Real-life example of omni-channel
Let’s say you are browsing on your desktop and have come across a backpack that impresses you on a retailer’s website, and you do the noble thing of adding it to the cart. However, something else distracts you, and you leave without completing the purchase. Some hours later when using your Smartphone, you see the exact backpack on an advertisement.
On clicking the ad, it takes you to the store, and you remember that you were planning to purchase it. Just before you finalize the payment, someone calls you on the same phone.
After the call, you decide that you don’t want any distraction, so you take your office iPad and finally complete the purchase. This is a common scenario that most customers are familiar with. Omni-channel marketing aims to ensure that all these channels lead to a conversion.
Online and Offline Shopping
The omni-channel also brings the online and offline shopping together. Despite the popularity of e-commerce, some customers still prefer to go to the stores physically to get what they want.
A buyer can decide to check the prices or features of a particular product online, then head to a brick and mortar store to purchase them.
The reverse can also happen. A buyer may ask about the specifications of an item from a store and decide to buy it from an online retailer. All in all, the marketing method used should allow the customers to pick from where they left.
One distinct feature of the omni-channel marketing is freedom. The buyers literally run the show and take charge of the entire purchasing process. They can direct it to whichever place that they want.
As a marketer, your responsibility is to ensure that all the paths are smooth and consistent. Do not be obsessed with the numbers, but instead focus on making each interaction fruitful and enjoyable. This strategy is not just restricted to omni-channel, but to digital marketing as a whole.
Ask your customers about their experience
The secret of a successful omni-channel marketing is customer involvement. Before including it in your marketing strategy, take some time to ask your clients about their experiences when using different platforms. Their views can help you to streamline the weak areas to make your business even better.
Be a data-savvy
Set up proper systems that will help you to collect accurate data from customers and visitors. Gather all the relevant information and insights that can be of use to your marketing campaign.
Do not be scared of the purchasing behaviour that customers are exhibiting. Although it may be intimidating, omni-channel marketing will ensure that customers complete their purchases.