Offering a unique, uniform, smooth and seamless experience for your customers before, during and after their purchase, has become the standard of good practice for marketers and has proven to be extremely rewarding. But with a big increase in channels added to the service experience, gaps in ways certain processes are handled are still a challenge for many brands. Achieving an excellent Omni-Channel strategy takes time, consistency and proper adaption as new channel integration can be very fluid. With a strong increase in the usage of digital channels by consumers and as many as 43% saying they would stop doing business with a company if they don’t provide a strong and seamless digital presence, offering a smooth experience for customers is more important than ever (source: ttec.com). Providing the same experience, using different devices and interacting through different channels is the core of a thorough Omni-Channel strategy.
Considering that most consumers spend more when multiple channels are aligned in services, the Omni-Channel experience should focus on an equally strong presence in:
- Service center and personal interaction
- Social media
Providing a uniform customer experience becomes particularly challenging when considering the different needs and importance of the separate channels in terms of culture (local culture vs. company brand and presence). Gaining detailed insights into customer behaviour and understanding their motivation can be the first step in carving out a successful strategy. Training personnel with the right tools and authorizations to provide a fast and uniform experience as well as offering real time alerts for mobile users to sync to store offers or improving the workflow through automated stocking tools can all support the integration of a seamless strategy.
Proper data management not only optimizes a brand´s potential for excellent communication but is the most valuable asset in building Omni-Channel excellence. Utilizing and implementing artificial intelligence tools in proper segmentation and customer lifecycle management is not only a trend, but the base for a successful strategy. By providing consumers with a uniform service and additional touchpoints throughout their journey that continue to transport the same message – a longer and richer experience can be achieved.
While certain channels continue to gain traction, for example through mobile sales or social sales, the customer experience as a whole remains at the centre of a successful strategy implementation. Sales through mobile apps or social media might have drastically increased, but customers are still expecting the same attention, interaction and service quality when contacting a service centeror visiting a store.
What do you think is the most important step in creating the best fully-integrated shopping experience for your customers?