In this technologically advanced era, it mesmerizes me how we progressed in the last 20 years alone. We have come from the time of Floppy disk space to Cloud space to store and share documents, from having one computer in a neighborhood to at least three devices per person, from placing trunk calls to speak to family friends to video conference from different geological places.
We have come so far and so fast that the lines between what we do in real life and what we do online is a blur. This change in behavior and philosophy has led to a change in various businesses’ marketing strategies. Instead of designing a desktop experience, mobile experience, iPad, or Apple Watch experience, companies have started to pursue a more holistic approach to keep their experience seamless irrespective of the platform that customers can use when they wish.
What is Omnichannel Marketing?
Omnichannel Marketing can be defined as a seamless customer experience at any digital platform on which customers want to connect with the businesses. Thus, allowing customers to complete their goal without changing, complicating, or hindering their experience.
How is Omnichannel Marketing different from Multi-Channel Marketing?
Omnichannel Marketing keeps the information relevant by automatically updating each digital channel where customer integrates with the business’ brand. Multi-channel marketing has static information across different digital channels, but this information is not customized based on customer needs.
We could say that the most significant difference between the two is that Multi-Channel Marketing puts the brand as the center of marketing strategy. In contrast, Omnichannel Marketing keeps the customer at the center of marketing strategy.
How Omnichannel works in the real world?
There can be various omnichannel examples in our daily digital life. Here I have taken a simple customer journey on an eCommerce website to try to explain. In this example, customer has recently logged into a website and has opted to receive SMS and Alerts from the website. Here is all that can happen:
- A welcome message with a joining discount offer can be sent as SMS and then can be followed up via email.
- Customer logs back in, browse different products, and sign up for push notification on a mobile device but do not complete the purchase.
- The customer comes back by clicking on the targeted advertisement and adds products to the cart but does not check out.
- The customer receives an email for cart abandonment via email and comes back only to finish the purchase.
- We send the Order confirmation via SMS and sent Shipment confirmation via Push notification with estimated delivery dates.
Any of these channels can be used later to bring the customer back to encourage purchase.
Retaining a customer by providing a fast and no-nonsense experience should be the goal of every business as customers have many options and can move to the competition with a click. Investing in omnichannel marketing can be expensive or overwhelming, but it is beneficial in the long run.