Getting Omnichannel Right:
How to Take Your CX Strategy Everywhere
In an age of shifting customer expectations and behaviours, it’s never been more important to transform how brands approach their marketing strategy.
Customer Experience (CX) is the strategy that marketers are turning to, a key aspect of which is ensuring that customers enjoy a consistent experience across all touchpoints.
That’s where an omnichannel approach comes in.
But what is omnichannel, what are its benefits, and how do you get omnichannel right?
What Is Omnichannel?
As marketers, you’ll know exactly what we mean by multi-channel marketing, the strategy that spreads your brand across multiple sales channels to engage more customers. But you might not be aware of omnichannel, which trumps multi-channel every time when it comes to Customer Experience (CX).
Because CX is about providing a holistic and engaging experience for customers across every touchpoint, omnichannel is a vital strategy for effective CX.
Omnichannel provides a consistent cross-channel experience that inspires customers and has a positive impact on revenue too. In fact, customers who engage with three or more channels make orders that are 13% more valuable than orders from single-channel campaigns.
The name comes from the Greek omni, which means “everything/all” – so “omnichannel” literally means “all-channels”. A truly omnichannel approach therefore takes a brand and presents it consistently and passionately to customers across all channels.
The potential of omnichannel is massive, and brands know it.
So why are brands moving to adopt an omnichannel approach?
Why Brands Benefit from Omnichannel
1) It increases customer loyalty
When you present a consistent engagement strategy across every channel, you increase customer loyalty.
Given that one third of those aged 23-38 are quick to drop a brand that doesn’t meet expectations with every engagement, organisations need a strategy that is proven to work.
Omnichannel CX is that strategy.
2) It inspires your customers
In our jobs, we tend to deal with stats and numbers, which makes it easy to forget that we aren’t marketing our products to robots – these are people we want to sell to! And people are ruled by emotion.
75% of customers have stopped using an organisation’s services because of a poor experience. Meanwhile, 63% of consumers feel that organisations should make getting to know them better a top priority.
People want to feel good and appreciated; with omnichannel, you can make your consumers feel this way no matter how or when they engage with your brand.
3) It increases sales
When customers experience a great service across every channel, they’re willing to spend more with your brand. As we said earlier, customers who engage with more than three channels make orders that are 13% more valuable than orders from single-channel campaigns.
After suffering a 2% net loss in the second quarter of the 2017/18 financial year, fashion giant Abercrombie & Fitch decided to up its game and compete more effectively with e-commerce titans like Amazon. Its transformation initiatives started off well, reducing the net loss to 0.5% the following year.
But Abercrombie & Fitch knew that they could do more. They invested $50-55 million in 2019 to enhance their digital and omnichannel capabilities, knowing full well the potential omnichannel holds. If it increases sales for A&F, it’ll work for your brand too.
4) It futureproofs organisations
Brands that manage to meet consumer expectations and match changing consumer behaviours will enjoy a more prosperous future. For instance, 76% of customers expect companies to understand their needs and expectations. If companies don’t understand their customers, these people will go to ones who do.
So how are consumer needs and expectations changing? There are now more than 21 billion connected devices in the world, or roughly 3 smart devices for every single human being on the planet. From voice assistants to VR, smart phones to tablets, smart TVs to AR, the sheer scale of available channels these devices provide is mind-boggling.
But those brands that capitalise on these available devices and bring a truly omnichannel approach to their CX strategy will be prepared for everything the future holds.
How to Get Omnichannel Right
Now you know why brands benefit from omnichannel, you need to know how to do omnichannel right.
There are some key tenets you should abide by to ensure your omnichannel strategy is irresistible to consumers.
1. Make It Relevant
Your customers’ attention is valuable but limited. There are more brands trying to get your customers’ attention than ever before, with companies spending over $560 billion in 2019 on advertising, up from $399 billion in 2010.
There’s only so much time and attention your customers can give you, and with so many other brands competing with you for consumer notice you need to make your first impression count.
But more importantly, you need to make your communications relevant.
Without relevant communications, you won’t resonate with audiences. You may as well talk to them in a different language. Ensure your message is relevant to your audience, their tastes and needs.
2. Make It Contextual
Context is crucial, too. Customers expect different things from each channel. If you use social media to communicate, etiquette is different on Instagram and Snapchat, and more different still on TikTok.
Similarly, how you engage with customers will vary between a website and an app, with microcopy coming to the fore in an app.
Tailor your communications to the channel you’re working in.
3. Make It Consistent
When it comes to communicating with your customers across every channel, your brand guidelines should be your holy text. No matter the channel, your strategy needs to communicate your brand in a consistent way so that no customer can be mistaken that your brand is genuine and authentic.
Consistency also makes sure that your customers know what your brand stands for and what your offers are. There is no room for confusion when your brand’s values are communicated consistently across every channel.
To get this right, coordinate your campaigns with everyone who will be responsible for every channel. Campaign managers need to work closely with creative to ensure messaging is consistent and exudes your brand’s values faithfully.
4. Make It Personal
Did you know that 93% of businesses with advanced personalisation strategies increased their revenue last year? Join those reaping the rewards and bring personalisation to your omnichannel strategy today.
Social media, apps, your website and email campaigns are the main areas to focus on when it comes to personalisation.
Think creatively about how you might tailor the experience on each channel to every customer. Go beyond simple things like just using the customer’s name. Push the boundaries by learning more about your customer and recommending products or services that will actually be helpful to your customer.
However, you must remember to balance your personalisation efforts. While 54% of customers are willing to share personal information with companies in order to get a personalised experience, some studies suggest up to 75% of consumers say they find personalised ads at least somewhat creepy. Balance your approach to make sure you don’t take it too far.
5. Remember to Track & Test
Tracking your channels and customer engagement won’t just help with your personalisation efforts. By tracking and testing your omnichannel approach, you can see what’s working and what isn’t.
Keep an eye on your omnichannel activities and review your efforts regularly. Look out for poor engagement and review your messaging and tone when you spot it – is your approach for that channel inappropriate? Think about how you could better tailor the approach to the constraints of that channel and what users expect from it.
It also pays to test your material before committing lots of resources to it, especially if the channel is a new medium for your brand.
The Time Is Now to Go Omnichannel
Now you know why omnichannel is important and how to start your omnichannel strategy off right, it’s time to begin. Kickstart your omnichannel CX strategy today to excite your customers and unlock untapped revenue potential for your brand.
For more insights around how to approach omnichannel, talk to us. We have a lot of partners who focus on CX and we can link you up with the right one for you that will take your brand through the next decade, and beyond.