You can break down the omnichannel customer experience by:
Map the customer journey
Listen to feedback
Choose the right tools
Many organizations are investing in digital channels, frequently to replace traditional engagement channels.
The thinking is that as customers become more technologically savvy, they favor digital channels, significantly reducing the need for live agents and thus saving significant costs.
An omnichannel approach enables customers to begin their experience with your brand in one channel and continue it on another channel seamlessly.
This will help you improve customer satisfaction, and loyalty and boost revenue.
Getting there requires aligning your marketing, sales, and customer support strategies.
If you want to improve brand recognition, create loyal customers, and boost revenue, prioritize an omnichannel strategy.
It may seem overwhelming initially, but a little progress each day will add up over time.
And as consumers notice the differences, you’ll see firsthand what the omnichannel experience can do.
The Birth of Online Shopping
When eCommerce first emerged as a new sales channel, companies wrestled with how to set up their distribution channels to address this new opportunity.
Some merged the activities into their existing fulfillment setups, others built new warehouses specifically to support online sales, and others used a hybrid approach such as using one distribution center partitioned off to manage the activities separately.
This “fragmented” approach trickled down to the customer experience, where buyers could only return products via the channel they used to purchase them.
What Is An Omnichannel Strategy?
At its core, omnichannel customer experience (CX) refers to brands that have the approach to delivering an integrated shopping experience.
The customer has a seamless experience of an easy transition from shopping online on a desktop or mobile device, to the phone, or a brick-and-mortar store.
Omni integration fosters a greater familiarity with the brand, which impacts positive brand image and retention rates.
An omnichannel approach involves interacting with consumers through various channels, but instead of having a unique strategy for each one, omnichannel focuses on creating an integrated experience in real-time.
All the channels are knitted tightly together.
Why Is The Omnichannel Customer Experience Important?
Giving your customers an omnichannel experience is important as it improves their encounters with your business and brand, increasing sales.
A survey carried out by the Harvard Business Review found that omnichannel customers spend more than single-channel customers, on average spending 4% more in-store and 10% more online.
In other words, customers who have an omnichannel experience are more valuable than those who don’t.
Build Brand Awareness
From your website to your app, your social media pages to your email, your employee’s shirt logo to your receipts, strive for consistent branding.
Familiarity breeds trust, trust builds repeat customers, and the easiest way to grow revenue is through repeat business.
Put Yourself In The Customer's Shoes
Put yourself in the customer’s shoes and think inside out. What kind of experience would you want if you were the customer? Direct connect? Hold in the call queue? Self-explanatory?
Feel what a customer would feel in a typical situation. Try to hear the voice of the customer to collect critical insights. Make a note of everything and refine the process accordingly.
Consider Customer Behavior
Not all customers are the same, and how they differ in their behavior and preferences—particularly on digital—should have an outsize influence on how service journeys are designed.
Customer personas provide tremendous value to your business by representing different segments that make up your target audience.
Using data-driven research is the key to understanding who is your target audience and what motivates them to purchase your products and services.
Companies can use the principles to construct a vision of how the customer journeys would look three years from now in a fully omnichannel world and then develop ambitious solutions to keep pace with this change.
Understanding the end state of the most important service journeys can help companies set goals accordingly.
To start, companies must determine which service journeys are most important in terms of the cost of the journey to the organization, the complexity involved in improving the journey, and how important the journey is to the customer.
Make The Customer Journey Convenient For Improved Customer Satisfaction
Customers are short on time. You can help them by ensuring products and services are easy to learn about and buy.
Customers want to press pause on one channel and resume on another when it’s convenient. So there needs to be consistency across your channels.
This is essential for creating a seamless experience at every stage of the customer’s journey, from pre-purchase to post-sales.
Centralized data from all channels can help you and your teams access it quickly and provide a personalized experience for customers.
Learn how to make your customer’s experience more convenient by conducting an assessment. Find out what could be getting in the way of this.
And for each discovery, think of ideas to help you overcome these challenges. You should also ensure your customer’s preferred channels can be accessed when they want.
Companies that meet this need will establish a competitive advantage in the marketing and see a significant increase in retention.
Develop Mobile Capabilities
Customers should be able to communicate through mobile devices as well as desktops.
More or less, we can say that there is nothing that we can’t do online. Even face-to-face interactions are possible through advanced virtual communication tools.
We can access any information in the world by just typing in a word, browsing through search engines, and getting the results.
It’s not laptops or computers; you can grab a phone and do the same.
Most people prefer mobile phones or tablets to do stuff online, simply because they are more convenient.
Not all industries have mastered mobile-friendly platforms yet. And surprisingly, there are plenty of e-commerce businesses whose websites could use a facelift and a few upgrades.
Not only does this create doubt in a client’s mind about your brand, but it also hurts your SEO ranking, affecting how prominently your business’s website appears on search engine results pages.
Provide Customer Support
As customers interact with your brand across different channels, you must provide an omnichannel customer support strategy to run alongside it.
To create an omnichannel customer experience, customers should be able to communicate directly with an agent on the channel they are currently interacting with.
Balancing Automation & Human Support
Despite the plethora of marketing automation tools available today, many people still prefer human interaction in certain instances. The challenge lies in knowing:
Which marketing moments lend themselves to automation?
Which marketing moments need a human touch?
Aim Your Omnichannel Strategy In The Right Direction
Optimize your content for only the offline and digital channels you need in your marketing approach.
There’s no point in overstretching and putting your message where people won’t hear it. Keep it consistent.
It may seem obvious, but whenever you doubt your omnichannel strategy’s direction, remember that consistency is key to developing loyal audiences and stronger customer relationships.
Higher Customer Engagement
When you increase your number of support channels, you increase the number of potential touchpoints a consumer can have with your brand.
This can help boost engagement and increase purchases.
Increased Brand Loyalty
If you want more loyal customers, getting to grips with omnichannel customer experiences is the way to go.
The improved customer experience achieved through omnichannel interaction also boosts brand loyalty.
A study by ClickZ found that customers who connected with a brand through three or more channels were 90% more likely to buy from that brand again.
Customers don’t like being frustrated – if they find a brand that gives them great customer service, they will stick with it.
Filling The Gaps
Measuring the gaps provides insights into what your customers are looking for and takes the right steps of improvement to deliver a better omnichannel customer experience.
Keep an eye out for any data gaps between various channels.
That may force customers to refer to different sources or channels for one purpose, wasting their time, causing inconvenience, and ultimately spoiling their overall experience.
Improved Customer Retention & Revenue
According to ClickZ, shoppers using three or more channels to interact with brands have a higher purchasing frequency rate, 250% higher than single-channel users.
Harvard Business Review also reports that customers who use more channels spend an average of 4% more in physical stores and 10 percent online.
Omni Channel Retail Example
An omnichannel transformation is the only way for retail or eCommerce businesses to address the rising complexity, provide an excellent customer experience, and manage operations costs.
Crate & Barrel understood that consumers usually switch through several different devices before completing purchases.
They moved to omnichannel settings to capitalize on the customer behavior of the toggling to devices.
Disney Theme Parks
Disney creates an omnichannel experience by providing customers with many different features and tools.
In the park, you can use your mobile app to locate the attractions you want to see and view the estimated wait time for each of them.
The entertainment company takes it one step further, though, with the release of its Magic Band program.
This tool acts as a hotel room key, a photo storage device for pictures taken of you with Disney characters, and a food ordering tool.
Plus, it even has Fast Pass integration to keep your vacation moving.
Pepperfry is a home furnishings company based in India. It was built by two friends who wanted to create a delightful customer experience for purchasing furniture.
Pepperfry accomplishes this goal by pairing its online store with an immersive in-person experience.
Customers can shop for a product online, look for furniture they like, then travel to a “Studio Pepperfry” to see what the products look like in person.
Once there, customers tour the studio with a Pepperfry design consultant.
Omnichannel vs. Multichannel Customer Experience
The main difference between a multi-channel and an omni channel strategy is the connection between channels.
However, an omnichannel customer experience differs significantly from the multichannel approach to customer experience.
According to HubSpot, the key difference between the two is that while a user in a multichannel environment may have access to various communication options, these channels aren’t necessarily synchronized or connected as they would be in an omnichannel environment.
Can Companies Use Omni Channel Marketing Offline?
There are plenty of offline omnichannel opportunities.
Even though most client interactions are digital, there are still analog channels that might make sense for your industry and business.
Radio, magazine ads, direct mail, event sponsorships, and branded merchandise are examples of offline channels you can explore and integrate into your strategy.
Amazon is the ultimate e-commerce website, but did you know it is working to extend its shopping experience into the offline world too?
Brick and mortar stores are still trendy, so even traditional e-commerce businesses shouldn’t rule them out for an extended omnichannel experience.
Provide A Seamless Omnichannel Customer Experience
Make sure communication is accessible across all channels. A customer should be able to connect to customer service through chats, emails, and across all social channels.
Also, work on creating a cross-channel platform. So when customers connect to a chatbot, they should be put across to a human without any disturbance.
Omnichannel Customer Service Is Not Going Away
Omnichannel customer experience is no longer an aspiration. It’s fast becoming a must-have for any modern business.
And that’s because consumers don’t have just one way to interact with your brand anymore.
A range of channels is available at their fingertips to reach out and learn more about your products and services.
Unlike customers of the past who used one or two channels to interact with brands and followed a linear pattern on their way to making their first purchase, modern consumers are different.
Today’s consumers zigzag their way through the buyer’s journey.
Customers use more than one channel during the buying journey and expect seamless interactions between them.
By implementing an omnichannel customer experience strategy in your business, you’ll be able to respond to customer needs whenever and wherever, at any stage in the journey.
Start their journey on one channel and end it on another. Use multiple channels to interact with brands and have many devices at their disposal.
Companies seeking to keep pace with industry leaders must embark on an omnichannel transformation that views touchpoints not in isolation but as part of a seamless customer journey.
How Does Kennected Create A Great Omnichannel Customer Experience?
Kennected provides customer satisfaction through the use of customer data. And we have LinkedIn to thank for that.
When users sign up for LinkedIn, customers expect growth of connections and possibly a job opportunity.
As a customer of multiple channels, your information is everywhere online, as scary as that may sound.
However, legally, LinkedIn gives anyone who connects with you the right to market to you based on your contact info, location, etc.
Customer interactions through connection requests give us an in-depth understanding of who our target audience is and how our marketing team can leverage this data for a cohesive customer experience.
And with self-service portals becoming the norm, customer expectations change, and companies evolve with those changes, including the in-store experience.
Hop-On The Kennected Train
According to HubSpot, 61% of companies name their top marketing challenge is generating traffic and leads.
If you’re part of that 61%, keep reading because what you’re about to discover could be a game-changer for you and your business (like it has for thousands of people before you).
So many business owners & sales professionals that come to us are struggling to get ahead because they’re stuck relying on referrals, lead lists, or manual prospecting.
This is taking up too much of their time and isn’t creating the consistent income they’re looking for to fund the lifestyle they want for themselves and their families.
Four years ago, the founders of Kennected had the same struggles. They found that lead generation was way too complicated, expensive, and time-consuming, knowing there had to be a better way.
So they developed a new way of getting qualified leads that turn into new customers on the #1 platform for B2B lead generation… LinkedIn.
In the four years since we developed this lead gen strategy, we’ve earned a spot on the Inc. 5,000 list of Fastest Growing Companies in America.
And more importantly, it helped over 17,000 businesses get new leads and sales for THEIR businesses.
Want to see how it works?
Click here to see how you can use Kennected to fill your sales pipeline with qualified leads in less than 10 minutes per day.