At the turn of the century, if someone wanted to make a purchase online, the experience was largely uniform regardless of where they went. They’d visit a website, sign up for an account, select a product, enter their payment information, and check out. Maybe there was a customer service telephone number to call if they had a question, or, more likely, they’d send an email. That’s about it.
These days, the number of options that consumers have when interacting with brands feels limitless. They have chatbots, social media, mobile apps, and so much more. It can be difficult for even a large brand to keep track of it all, which is why being proactive about creating a true omnichannel e-commerce experience is crucially important.
The Impact of Omnichannel E-Commerce Solutions: An Overview
Although the technology at the heart of an omnichannel approach to e-commerce may be sophisticated, the central theme is anything but. You’re simply trying to integrate all channels and technologies in a way that creates a consistent, seamless, high-quality experience for people, regardless of where they happen to be.
Whether they’re at a physical store, are using a mobile app, are on your website, or are engaged via social media, they know what they’re going to get, and they can rely on that experience. One example of an omnichannel software provider is Mitto, but there are many others out there.
However, the factor that has allowed omnichannel to truly revolutionize the online shopping experience comes down to the benefits that it brings to brands in particular. According to one recent study, those organizations with high levels of omnichannel customer engagement tend to see a roughly 9.5% increase in revenue year over year. Those businesses that don’t prioritize omnichannel strategies only see a 3.4% increase over the same period.
Omnichannel Communication Is Here to Stay
The reason why so many have come to embrace omnichannel is because it puts control over the experience into the hands of the consumer, where it belongs. People don’t want brands to tell them where, how, and when an interaction can take place. If someone has a question that they feel is important, they don’t want to have to call a lone telephone number between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. on Monday through Friday to get an answer. If they want help at 3:00 am on a Sunday, they want it now. And if you can’t give it to them, they’ll find someone else who will.
According to another recent study, when brands expand their customer outreach efforts to three or more channels, they have the potential to boost their overall order rate by an amazing 494%. A lot of this has to do with the fact that an estimated 60% of all consumers participate in omnichannel shopping to some degree.
All it takes is one quick look at the benefits to both brands and consumers to see why omnichannel has already made a far-reaching and permanent impact on the world of online shopping. It makes the products that people love available in more places and more ways than ever before. For businesses, it opens up new opportunities to drive both traffic and sales. It improves the quality of the customer experience in a way that makes this a core part of a business’s competitive advantage. It no longer matters if there are a lot of other sources for similar products online if nobody offers them better than you do.
Truly, when you consider how far omnichannel messaging has come in a relatively short amount of time, it’s exciting to think about what the next decade has in store for businesses and their audiences alike.