Consumers may not realize it, but there are a lot of steps associated with making one small purchase. In fact, 67% of consumers said they start shopping on one device and finish on another. Whether a person is shopping online or at a brick and mortar store, there are 4 phases of their shopping journey: Research, decision making, checkout and payment, and fulfillment of the product.
Omnichannel retailing is a response to the way that humans actually shop since the four phases remain the same regardless of where the transaction takes place. In Accenture’s Seamless Retail Study, 89% of participants said it is important for retailers to allow them to shop using the sales channel that is most convenient for them. Instead of worrying about the fact that customers might find a better price and use their smartphone to buy from another retailer online, retailers need to respect the power of the mobile experience.
So what can retailers do to embrace the process? Here’s three tips:
Keep pricing consistent.
Research shows that 75% of shoppers will compare prices using their mobile devices while shopping in-store. While it’s normal for flash sales and daily deals to be offered exclusively online, and doorbusters to primarily be available in physical stores that actually have doors, everyday deals and discounts need to be available across all channels, including military, teacher and student discounts. Verification eligibility platforms can help retailers manage their coupon codes and prevent fraud.
Connect with consumers through personalized strategies.
Simply storing a customer’s purchasing history and recommending similar products is no longer enough to meet the needs of today’s consumers. Retailers need to form relationships with their customers based on their lifestyles and buying habits, not just their purchases, to cement brand loyalty and encourage repeat buys. The boom of big data has created new opportunities for retailers to personalize messaging to their customers or reach targeted customer segments.
Employ third-party service providers.
Instead of hiring research analysts and devoting IT time to developing the necessary technology for an omnichannel presence, many companies are following the lead of the early adopters and building upon their successes by using third party service providers to benefit from their expertise and quicker implementations. Many software developers recognized opportunities in the retail and mobile landscapes in the early days of e-commerce when top retailers still considered mobile and web sites mere branding exercises. Combining forces with a knowledgeable third party can help bring a business to the forefront of their industry.
Want to know more about how you can create a successful omnichannel experience on your site? Read our whitepaper, Secrets to Omnichannell Success: How to Conquer Today’s Retail Market.