Omni-channel retail is more than just a trend, it’s the future of the industry. Say you sell on eBay, Amazon, your own webstore, and even have several brick and mortar locations. That’s great, but are your customers having the same information-rich experience from one channel to the next? If yes, congratulations, you’re ahead of the game in omni-channel. If not, you’ve got some work to do to catch up with the retail trend setters. Ninety-two percent of retailers that operate on and offline have a hard time integrating the experiences on the two channels. Luckily, Wiser’s new infographic has the top tips for making omni-channel a reality.
Shoppers love your products, but do they love the experience they have with you on different screens? Experience plays a huge role in the decision to make a purchase, just like pricing does. Andy Katz-Mayfield, the Co-Founder and Co-CEO of the shaving products company Harry’s, explained that having an omni-channel strategy is ‘‘less about creating another channel to sell product… It’s about providing a really great experience.’’ How can you deliver a seamless experience and enjoy the benefits that come along with it?
First and foremost, regardless of the channels you use, you need to provide the best pricing and product information possible to browsers and buyers alike. Roughly 33% of consumers will check prices online while in-store and 80% of shoppers will check prices online before buying at all. In addition to prices, they could also be looking for product information. Macy’s uses a strategy that lets shoppers scan items on its mobile app in order to see more product information. Make it easy for consumers to get all the information they need and want to know.
Once retailers have their pricing and product information up to date and easily accessible, these tips can make an omni-channel strategy a (profitable) reality.
Multiple screens and social media
Consumers are looking at your products on a number of screens and they will look you over if each one doesn’t offer a high quality experience. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again, social media is a great way to interact with your market. Whether you’re answering customer service questions or retweeting someone who styled your products well, U.S. internet users spend almost a quarter of their web time on social media sites, and ignoring it would be silly.
Using multiple inventories to your advantage
Selling online and offline can be a great way to sweeten the deal. How? It gives consumers more options for getting their hands on your items. Buying a product online and picking it up in store can be a great way to get shoppers who need items quickly to buy from you online and encourage them to check out additional merchandise. Half of consumers think being able to pick up orders in store is a very important factor when shopping online. Shared inventory pays off, as 33% of retailers fulfill online orders with inventory from brick-and-mortar stores. On the flip side, offering to ship an item when your store doesn’t have the size or color a customer wants can improve loyalty and perceptions of your customer service.
Do you know who makes you the most money?
The people who have already made you money in the past. So get ‘em back on your site by retargeting. Big data is a retailer’s best friend because it knows what customers have bought in the past and can offer on-point recommendations. Customize the shopping experience as much as you can to make shoppers feel catered to and increase the likelihood of them buying from you again. Everyone likes being treated like VIP.
Omni-channel retail isn’t something that retailers can sleep on. It can boost brand perception and sales. So what are you waiting for? Check out our new infographic below and leave a comment if there are any additional strategies fellow retailers could benefit from.