Omni-What: why omnichannel is critical to retail

By: Renée Clare-Kovacs, Content Strategist at Sellr

The world of retail has changed dramatically. The obvious big game changer is online marketing. Shoppers are researching purchases online. More than half of web traffic comes from mobile devices. Online marketing does not reduce the importance of in-store advertising, but it does create a new marketing strategy—omnichannel marketing.

What is Omnichannel?

Omnichannel marketing uses the same messaging across all marketing channels, optimizing it for each channel. Fragmented marketing creates confusion. Coordinated marketing messaging that uses the same content across online and in-store channels improves:

  • Brand awareness
  • Trust
  • Consumer confidence
  • Product promotion

Consider this: a potential customer sees your product promotion on Facebook. They look up the product, ask friends about it, and, while they are out one evening, do a mobile search for the product and find your store. If all of these touch points include the same tone of voice, font, colors, and graphics, the customer knows they are continuing to see the same message across a variety of channels—hence omni (meaning one) channel!

Omnichannel Improves Your Customer Experience

After working to draw customers in with online marketing, the consumer confidence should continue into your store. The consistent tone of voice, font, colors, and graphics the customer saw online continues into the aisle, confirming that they are in the right place. An important, but often overlooked, omnichannel marketing practice is to keep your sales staff up-to-date with your marketing messages. It does little good to build a promotion campaign that falls apart at the point of sale because the employee doesn’t know about the promotion. By keeping all channels consistent, from online to purchase, your customer knows what to expect, creating a great customer experience.

Don’t Lose Yourself

Of course, it is important to get the message out and often times you’re promoting on behalf of big brands who have their own style. Stay true to your brand voice and don’t be afraid to show a little bit of your own brand’s personality; anyone can sell what you’re selling, they want to buy from you because of who you are. Also, don’t get so wrapped up in trying to hyper-optimize each post and tweet for its particular channel that you lose sight of your brand identity. If we’re being honest, your post will be seen by 100 people on average. While this is great for promotion (every set of eyes counts), it also means the ROI of stressing about how to create a coordinated message that maximizes each channel is very little.

Stay True to Your Marketing

Product promotion takes a lot of work. By creating a style for yourself that includes the look and feel of your store, you establish a backbone for an omnichannel experience that lets you market efficiently and effectively. Regardless of where your customers find you, they are confident that they are working with you because of this. They want to work with you because of the confidence you build in them through a consistent customer journey from research to point of sale.

Meet customers where they are—online or in the aisle. It is critical that when they see you again on another channel, or even the same one, they recognize your brand. That seemingly simple connection is the key to modern retail success.

About Renée Clare-Kovacs

Renée is the Content Strategist at Sellr and is finishing he Master’s degree in Digital Content Strategy. She is passionate about creating digital marketing strategies that help business owners develop successful relationships with customers and vendors.