Building an omni-channel strategy in 2021 is more important than ever before. Omni-channel is a buzzword that’s often referred to in retail.
Most people think it simply refers to the relationship between online and bricks and mortar however there is more to it than that. Omni-channel is a multichannel approach to retail that provides the customer with a seamless shopping experience across all touch points.
It takes into consideration the journey a customer takes from the time they start their shopping experience through to the point at which they decide to buy, dependent on how long they take to make a purchase, these touch points could be very different. This may include bricks and mortar stores, online stores, mobile and app-based stores, a phone call, a newspaper, a magazine or a trade show. The important factor here is to provide them with a seamless shopping experience.
This means that everything related to a brand needs to be ‘on-brand’ and consistent with regards to product, price, packaging. Should pricing or products not be aligned across different touch points, the customer may start to doubt a brand thereby losing credibility and trust. Building your customers trust by ensuring a positive, consistent brand experience is imperative. This in turn is instrumental to your retail partners success and top of mind when they consider your brand for their business.
Success is dependent upon having a great product that delivers its promise, with a unique point of difference, wrapped up in a compelling brand story, supported by a strong team of people who believe in it.
Retailers understand that to keep customers shopping their experience needs to be immersive and entertaining. It is about creating theatre, enabling the customer to visualise their intended purchase, to trial or try on their desired product and to shop with ease. An interactive journey to purchasing a new lipstick may involve searching online to identify the latest trends from different brands. Reading consumer reviews and watching online tutorials. Viewing Instagram, YouTube videos, augmented reality apps and price comparison websites.
Once they have identified their preference, they may then go into a store to try on a selection and once they have selected their best option, they may go back online to obtain the best price, and the quickest delivery option. It is a complete journey that requires an understanding of consumers shopping habits at all points, as well as how to keep them engaged whilst providing them with the necessary information and tools.
Whilst bricks and mortar have experienced challenging times and the ongoing adaptations in technology have seen the introduction of chatbots and virtual reality becoming more mainstream across online channels, traditional retail stores still play a valued role in the shopping experience. Retail stores are recognized for their ability to educate consumers, providing an opportunity to interact with ‘beauty experts’ through product demonstrations, make-overs and 1-2-1 services including hairdressing, facials, nails and waxing.
To provide an immersive experience between the two channels, many retailers hold events where both online and offline customers are jointly invited to discover a new brand or product in-store. It is all about creating theatre, an immersive experience that is seamless across all touch points.
Are you looking for expertise to help you with developing your omni-channel strategy and your marketing campaign and events? Get in touch to discuss how we can work with you. As a beauty brand management company we work with our clients to develop their brands from ‘concept to shelf’.
Unless someone comes from a background in this industry, you wouldn’t know what is required. Not only do I have the support of an experienced team to help me to make things happen and to grow my brand, but I also have a great personal relationship with Janet and her team, working in this way means I have someone to turn to, to share the journey of running a business.