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Understanding Omnichannel Commerce

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Last editedSep 20212 min read

Between physical stores, websites, mobile apps and social media, there are so many tools available to you to create a great shopping experience for your customers. However, with this comes a challenge. A consistent message is necessary, so you should try to unify the data stored across your channels in a process known as omnichannel commerce.  What’s more, studies suggest that more and more customers are using multiple platforms to shop, and by presenting a consistent brand image and message across all of these channels, you can boost revenue and customer retention.

Read on to find more about omnichannel commerce solutions and how they could transform your business.

Omnichannel commerce definition

Omnichannel commerce is a broad term that encompasses many different aspects of the customer experience. Essentially, it deals with offering a unified experience to customers, no matter which platform they are using to interact with your shop. It’s important to note that this includes a number of different touchpoints which are not necessarily transactional, such as live chat, social media, search and stock information.

The omnichannel commerce definition is easier to understand with the help of examples. If a customer is able to check the stock of a product through a live Facebook feed, place an order on the website and then go to the physical store to pick up the product, this is a great example of integration between omnichannel commerce platforms.

On the other hand, an example of poor omnichannel commerce would be if a customer at a grocery store arranges to pick up their shopping via the website and arrives to find that certain items are out of stock because the website was not updated.

What are the benefits of omnichannel commerce?

Omnichannel commerce is all about improving customer experience. Nowadays, customers expect a seamless service between channels, and you’ll be left behind the competition if you do not offer this. Creating an integrated approach allows your customers to easily interact with the company in a way that feels natural to them. There are various other advantages to the omnichannel approach:

  • Improving sales and traffic. Studies suggest that omnichannel customers spend more than single-channel customers, and for each additional channel, shoppers are more likely to spend.

  • More sophisticated data analytics. If you can track your customers over different channels, you can collect more detailed data and gain better insights into their behaviour.

  • Improved customer loyalty. An omnichannel commerce platform creates a better shopping experience that leaves your customers feeling satisfied, meaning they are more likely to make repeat purchases.

  • Better brand awareness. By presenting a unified front across channels, you can create a consistent brand image, which in turn leads to improved awareness.

Unified commerce vs omnichannel commerce

You might have also heard the term unified commerce and wonder what the differences are between this and omnichannel commerce. In short, omnichannel commerce is a step on the way to unified commerce. While omnichannel commerce refers to the way in which different platforms communicate with each other and share data, unified commerce refers to a fully unified system that is supported by a single platform. In unified commerce, data is shared in real time, and all channels are essentially merged into one.

Establishing omnichannel commerce solutions

So, what is the best way to establish your omnichannel commerce strategy? There are a few things you should bear in mind:

  • Before beginning, you should research your customers by sending them questionnaires and requesting feedback. With this information, you can make informed decisions.

  • Based on your feedback, you can decide on the best channels to use and also select a purpose for each of these channels. For example, which channel will be used for news updates? Which is the best channel for communicating with customers?

  • Connect the channels using back-end omnichannel commerce solutions and software.

  • Maintain the channels with regular updates and ensure you communicate with your customer base regularly.

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