OMNICHANNEL MARKETING | Northcap University

OMNICHANNEL MARKETING

14th Jun, 2024
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In present scenario, Businesses follow the anthem that customer is the king of the market place. So, to satisfy the customers they all try different strategies to build a healthy and conducive relationship with customers. As a result, it has become vital for businesses to connect with customers through various channels and points of contact(touchpoints), including both online and offline domains. Touch points are the point of contact or interaction between business and customers. The interactions between customer and business occurs through various platforms like websites, mobile apps, social media, search engine optimization, affiliate marketing, physical stores, customer service centres, email, and etc. Each point of contact is an opportunity for the businesses to engage with their customers and provide them a positive and consistent experience. Due to digitalisation, customers now prefer online shopping instead of going to physical stores and shop. Shopping from online channels become prominent in retail sector as it provides the customers to purchase products from anywhere at any time. Technological developments and on-going digitalization are significantly influencing consumer behaviour, evolution of market, and brand-consumer interactions. Businesses are responding to these changes by offering integrated ongoing channels. The omnichannel retail strategy is a recent trend in retail that has transformed the industry by merging all customer’s points of contact into a unified experience.

 As per the Cambridge Dictionary, omnichannel is define as a strategy that retailers use to sell the products that provides a similar and equally good experience to customers whether they purchase it from a company’s website or mobile app or from a physical store. It is a strategy for nurturing leads and engaging users, wherein a company provides access to its products, offers, and customer support services across all channels, platforms, and devices.  Omnichannel refers to a strategy offered by various businesses where they provide seamless shopping experience to their customers through multiple channels, whether they are shopping online from computers or mobile device or from an offline platform (physical stores). It creates a positive and cohesive environment where it utilises the advantage of each and every platform or channel. Customers have the convenience to buy from any mode of channel either online or offline. They can purchase the products online and pick them up from nearby physical store, offers them convenience and flexibility.

There are two approaches of marketing that retailers follow – multichannel marketing and omnichannel marketing, both deals with involvement of customers through  multiple channels but the major difference between them is that in the former one the channels are managed and accounted separately and latter provides a smooth and seamless interaction between customers and businesses and once the data of the customer is stored from one channel would be carry forward to all other touch points and he/she could have a flexible shopping experience without any hindrance and could move between the channels at any point of time. With the help of the data provided by the customers, retailers utilize it to provide personalised recommendation and advertisements based on the customer’s browsing and history of purchases across various channels. It delivers the appropriate content to prospective buyers at the right moment. Multichannel retailing gives emphasis to product whereas omnichannel focus on how to provide a satisfying experience to customers with frictionless mobility within channels. Omnichannel retailing is the extension of multichannel, it basically overcome the shortcomings of multichannel marketing. It provides a holistic experience to customers while using various channels. Omnichannel approach of retailing is trending and places more emphasis on synergy of traditional and digital channels of purchases. Retailers who opt for multichannel approach focus on the growth of the online channels not the integration of them. Each channel might deliver different experience to the customer. The focus of the omnichannel retailing is to integrate the channels and provide seamless and unified experience. It enables the businesses to have a customer centric approach. Businesses who have the presence on more touch points have the competitive advantage as they have more visibly compared to its competitors. Businesses who chose various channels to interact with their customers can generate greater sales and profits as compared to those who have limited presence on one or two touchpoints. Presence on more touchpoints leads to more opportunities for the company to explore and even the awareness of brand among potential customers is high. Customers who are satisfied are more inclined to become loyal customers of the company.

 Starbucks, Sephora, Amazon, Google Chrome, Spotify, Apple are some of the examples of brands implemented omnichannel marketing strategy.

Authored By

Dr. Kanchan Yadav
Assistant Professor
https://www.ncuindia.edu/

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