An omnichannel universe

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What is omnichannel

What is omnichannel?

The last couple of years, it has almost been impossible to avoid the term “omnichannel”. 

Implementing an omnichannel way of thinking is an emerging tendency within retail, but was, does it exactly entail? It is challenging to seek a clear definition of the term “omnichannel” because it is still relatively new. 
 
On this page, however, we will try to explain what omnichannel means more explicitly and to show you how an omnichannel way of thinking can be valuable for your business. 
 
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Much more than a buzzword

The concept of omnichannel is not just a modern buzzword - it marks a significant shift within sales and marketing. 
 
Today, customers can interact with businesses through different channels - in physical stores, on webshops, through mobile apps, catalogs, or on social media. They can also access these channels from different devices, such as via a computer or a mobile phone. With a presence on various channels and devices, it is possible to improve the customer experience and reach a broader range of potential customers.

The focal point is to coordinate
processes and technologies across channels to provide the customer with a consistent, seamless, and
relatable customer experience.

Your different channels must cooperate; otherwise, it can create problems with supply chains, and it can be challenging to develop a consistent and relatable customer experience. An omnichannel mindset sheds light on this issue. The focal point is to coordinate processes and technologies across channels to provide the customer with a consistent, seamless, and relatable customer experience.

Omnichannel is about giving your customers a consistent cross-channel experience, thus improving the customer experience. The key is integrating the various touchpoints that the customers encounter on their purchase journey with the technical solutions that ensure that prices, selection, and pick-up options are the same across channels.

Travelling from single channel to omnichannel 

Hopefully, you have now gained an understanding of what the focal point in an omnichannel mindset is and why it can be valuable to implement as a business model.

To obtain a deeper understanding of omnichannel, however, it may be relevant to turn back time a bit and look at the journey from single channel to multi channel, from multi channel to cross channel and from cross channel to omnichannel.

 

fra single til omni info-3

 

Single channel

Before the Internet was a fundamental part of every customer's daily life, most retailers only sold their goods through a single channel - the physical store. With the advent of the Internet, many have expanded their presence, but the single channel business model still exists. Single channel means that you only sell your products through one channel. It can be either a physical store, a webshop, or something completely different.


Multi channel

Briefly explained multi channel means that you sell your goods on more than one channel (e.g., in a physical store and on a webshop), but your channels do not work together. Instead, they are divided into silos and handled as two or more different businesses. For example, if you have a physical store and a webshop, these will each have their inventory, management, business idea, marketing strategy, etc. 

It will not be possible for your customers to use a gift card across your channels or return a product purchased at your webshop in your physical store.

 

Cross channel 

Just like with a multi channel business model, you are present on several channels with a cross channel business model - the difference is that your channels are connected and not divided into silos. Cross channel can be seen as a nuanced version of multi channel, which is more centered around the customer. Your various channels are coordinated so that they complement each other, and you can offer your customers a more consistent experience when they shop with you. A product purchased at your webshop can be returned in your physical store, and a gift card can be used across your channels. You can also send your customers coupons via email that they can redeem in your physical store. 

 

Omnichannel

Omnichannel is perceived as a further development of the cross channel. The aim is that your customer's shopping journey, across your channels, work even more smoothly. They must be offered an even more seamless and relatable shopping experience - no matter which channel they choose to shop on. With a cross channel business model, your channels are connected. With an omnichannel business model, they are integrated. This is reflected in the fact that information your customers have entered on one channel can be transferred to other channels - both physical and digital. For example, your customer can create a profile on your webshop that will also be available on a mobile device application, and which they may also be able to access from a screen in your physical store.

When you integrate your various channels, you only need to maintain data in one place, and that is, in addition to streamlining your time, associated with several benefits. You get more valid data, and you ensure that your customers experience consistency in prices and stock across your channels. That way, your business becomes more reliable, and your customers more loyal.

With an omnichannel business model, you can also offer your customers Click & Collect. With Click & Collect, your customers can order items on your website and get it delivered to your physical store. This does not only mean that you meet your customers' wishes and needs - but you also ensure an opportunity to achieve additional sales. A survey conducted by the e-Commerce portal InternetRetailing shows that around 60-75% of all Click & Collect customers end up putting extra items in the basket when they visit your physical store to pick up a preordered product.

Many retailers have caught sight of the concept of loyalty clubs', where their customers can get discounts, special offers, exclusive content, event invitations, etc. The idea of ​​tying your customers closer to your business is undoubtedly useful, but it requires an integration of your channels and thus presupposes that you implement an omnichannel business model.

 

Where are we going? Unified Commerce

 

Unified commerce is a further
development of omnichannel, which briefly explained is a total solution that allows you to execute on your omnichannel business model.

Although your sales channels with an omnichannel business model are integrated, your knowledge of your customer's current situation may be limited due to a lack of homogeneous and updated data. Therefore, you may end up sending your customers offers that are not relevant to them at that time, which may give them an impersonal experience.
 
To create the coherence required by an omnichannel business model, things must be seen in a bigger perspective, and the idea of ​​channels must be ditched. Instead, the focus should be on your customer's experience with your overall business. However, it is easier said than done. You may be forced to work in channels if you lack the necessary solutions and integrations to create coherence between your systems, data, etc.


Unified commerce is a further development of omnichannel, which briefly explained is a total solution that allows you to execute on your omnichannel business model. Your database is integrated and exchanged directly between your channels. Thus, you achieve an overall picture of your customer that gives you insight into your customer's needs and desires here-and-now. With this knowledge, you can tailor personalized offers to your customers, and give them a personalized service when shopping in your physical store. That way, you can increase your chances of both upselling and additional sales. 

omni uni-4


An example of a Danish retail company that has had great success in implementing an omnichannel business model and using unified commerce to execute this is Matas. In a presentation for FDIH Customer, Insights and Omnichannel Manager, Stefan Kirkedal, says that Matas has access to data from 1.5 million people through their members club Club Matas. With access to this data, they can create a unique experience for their customers no matter what channel they are shopping on. According to Stefan Kirkedal, the number of omnichannel customers has grown, and they also shop more. Today, omnichannel customers are an increasing share of Matas' revenue. In addition to Matas, Bog & Idé has been successful in implementing an omnichannel business model.

For Bog & Idé, Click and Collect has proved to be valuable. According to Impact, 65% of Bog & Idé's online orders are picked up in their physical stores. Even though their industry, in general, is having a hard time, they have experienced growth in 2018 - two years after they implemented their omnichannel strategy. Like Matas, Bog & Idé also uses data to get the most value out of their omnichannel business model. Impact writes that Bog & Idé's physical stores with the tool Raptor use real-time data from their webshop to gain insight into which books their customers buy. With that knowledge, they can strategically place popular books visibly in their stores.

Earlier this year, Føtex launched their loyalty application føtex Plus,where they provide personalized offers and discounts to users of the app. This is another example of a retail company that has created a successful omnichannel business by focusing on the value of the data they receive from their customers.

The list of advantages of omnichannel is long

Additional sales, awareness, customer loyalty, etc.

You may know what omnichannel is, and you may even be in the process of implementing the mindset in your business. You are aware that it is a natural part of the development to make omnichannel an integral part of your retail business, but do you know the concrete benefits?

The list of benefits that come with implementing an omnichannel business model is long and includes additional sales, cost optimization, and customer loyalty.

How to
create a succeful omnichannel strategy

Consistent buying experience across channels

Of course, it differs from business to business how an omnichannel strategy should look to be most successful. It depends I .a. on what products you sell, the demand, and what type of customer you want to reach.

But most businesses have the overall purpose the strategy should preferably fulfill in common - that their customers get a consistent experience when they shop across the different channels. And of course, that this purpose is achieved in the most profitable way for the business. Therefore, you must focus on your various channels collaborating rather than working in parallel. It is not just relevant to work with webshop SEO and well-written content or to provide personal customer service in your physical store. It is the overall customer experience across your channels that should be the main focus.

Boost your revenue
with Click & Collect

A part of your omnichannel strategy

With Click & Collect, your customers can buy items online and pick them up at a physical store rather than having them shipped to their home address. The implementation of a Click & Collect system allows your company to offer several different collection options that increase customer satisfaction and at the same time, boost your business.

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