OMNICHANNEL IN RETAIL
Expand your product selection (at retail) and more
In this post we take a closer look at omnichannel in the retail space and explore the why, what, and how. Why is it necessary, what exactly is it (in terms of retail), and how can you make it part of your next in-store merchandising program.
We’ve all been there
At the store, you’re walking down an aisle and something catches your eye.
It’s not exactly what you’re looking for; so you wonder if it comes in different colors. Or do they have something cheaper? How are the reviews? Do they have it in stock? Maybe you even take a picture of it as a reminder or just try to take a mental note.
How many times have you had these questions and you think to yourself, “I’ll just buy it online when I get home.”
But what happens… life.
There can be an endless number of reasons why you forgot or lost track of time.
And most likely, you probably won’t remember until you see it in the store again. Starting the whole cycle over again.
Let’s break this down.
You (customer) are interested in a product. The merchandising caught your attention but you have more questions.
Traditional in-store marketing did its job, grabbing your attention and getting you excited about the product/brand. However, it stops short of answering your questions and the retailer loses out on the sale.
But what if they were able to answer those pesky questions. For example, is it available in other colors/finishes. What have other people said about the product or the company? Is it in stock? If not, can they order it at the store and get it shipped directly? And that’s exactly what the endless aisle can do for your customers.
Ok, so you’ve heard about omnichannel
The idea of merging the customer experience from online to physical is far from a new concept. At this point, it’s a necessity.
By reaching the shopper via email marketing, in-store messaging to social media post and everything in between, you’re building brand recognition and credibility. Thus targeting the potential customer throughout each stage of their buying journey.
However, bridging the gap between the digital and physical world can be challenging. The key being, the right people at the right time, this means identifying the customer and figuring out ways to best reach them, easier said than done, especially in the real world. Capturing their information from web sites or mobile apps has built in trackers such as cookies and geotags, and perhaps shoppers may even provide their email address (some smart ones, even have secondary addresses/accounts just for spam).
However, what happens when they are offline? What happens when the shopper is in the store and ready to purchase?
That’s when incorporating an endless aisle experience might be the right approach.
to create the endless aisle experience?
There’s an easy way and a easier way.
Starting with the easy way, use what you already have.
Every brand and retailer understand the importance of their digital presence and has created some amazing sites that may link reviews, provide inspiration images and let you know what’s in stock. Well, why not use what you have and adjust it to retail.
Replace the standard monitor, with looping video or rotating stock images with a touch screen monitor. Take you digital tools and bring it to retail. Allow shoppers to read reviews, sort through inspiration images and shop products that aren’t displayed.
While this is an excellent approach to using what you already have, it’ll need to be tweaked to appeal to the retail vs the desktop/mobile shopper. Their questions may be similar but the time and convenience factor are more important when addressing the in-store shopper.
Depending on your teams workload and ability, it may be the perfect option… or maybe not.
So, look to an easier option: working with experts, like us, Benchmarc.
Optimize your digital content in-store to connect with future customers in a meaningful way beyond videos and imagery. Enhance the customer experience by providing shoppers in-real time the answers they need in their buying journey. Connecting with shoppers the way they want, when they need it, for example:
- Browsing products not on display
- Requesting products from store associates
- Explore inspiration images and see customer reviews
- Check if the item is in stock or where to find it
- Provide contact information
- Sign up for promotions
While creating a better experience for shoppers, this omnichannel approach also provides an essential tool for any business; DATA.
- See what products appeal to shoppers in-store and understand why
- Building your email marketing list by capturing contact info and sync with your CRM in real time
- Sync the in-store and online customer profile
- Discover metrics for future omnichannel campaigns
And oppose to to graphics or changing out video loops, it’s easier and faster to make updates on the backend. Or have different sites for different markets.
What if your store displays could do more? What would they do? How could they improve your customer’s experience?
We can help you answer these questions and more.
Reach out to us if you’re interested in learning more about refreshing your display program at:
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