Omnichannel Basics that Win Customer Expectations

The key for any brand to create a unique story is to engage the consumer with a message that creates an emotional bond. Since the beginning of the digital era, brands have faced a major challenge, to adapt to an increasingly powerful omnichannel world. In doing so, the challenge lies in providing a seamless consumer experience across all-channels without compromising their value in the market. 

So how can brands capitalize in an omnichannel world?

To provide a true omnichannel shopping experience, brands must allow shoppers to receive their items at any time through any channel. A perfect example of this is Amazon, otherwise known as the leader in eCommerce, introduced a revolutionary capability for Amazon Prime shoppers to compete among retailers. Amazon offered consumers something they have never been able to do before; more convenient shipping options such as one-hour delivery. 

Since then, retailers such as Best Buy, Macy’s, Shoe Carnival and Target have ramped-up their delivery and fulfillment strategies by offering:

  • Click-and-collect, better known as buy online/pickup in-store
  • Buy in-store, ship-to-home
  • Ship-from-store
  • Same day, and on-demand delivery

Enabling these great capabilities has set the stage for consumers to expect their shopping experience to be easier, faster and even cheaper! In doing so, retailers are finding a way to increase their investments in inventory, visibility, and fulfillment capabilities in order to successfully compete and provide a seamless omnichannel experience. With capabilities such as ship-from-store, retailers can transform their physical storefronts into fulfillment centers, so buyers now have the option to locate orders nearby, rather than from a warehouse or distribution center. The advantages of this technique includes quicker convenience, and access to a larger product assortment.

Retailers can execute a fulfillment strategy without interrupting the customer’s brand experience. Meaning, retailers can fulfill online orders without changing their store format, purchasing process, or eCommerce appearance. In this manner, the consumer shopping experience is enhanced through all channels without the consumer even knowing it. Although it may seem as though many retailers are implementing fulfillment options into their strategy, the majority of the industry is still lagging behind. 

Shoe Carnival’s VP of eCommerce, Kent Zimmerman, once said in an interview; “If customers were shopping on our site one day when we were working with our third party logistics provider, and then shopping the next day with our new system in place, they would not notice anything different other than the fact that there was so much more inventory available to them.” 

If you are trying to enhance the customer experience on your omnichannel site, then remember it needs to include considerably more than just the front-end applications and payment portals. Keep in mind, customer satisfaction comes first from having your fulfillment strategy exceed delivery, from pick-up to delivery with quick, convenient, and effective capabilities and functions.

Interested to learn more? Check out our infographic that highlights the benefits of being an omnichannel brand.

Of customers are retained by companies with a robust omnichannel customer engagement. (Aberdeen Group)-7.png