Today’s omnichannel retail reality requires brands of all sizes to deliver clear and consistent messaging and experiences from in-store to online in order to capture the attention of connected customers.
Consider all the different places and platforms where potential customers are encountering or interacting with your brand: eCommerce sites, in-store, online marketplaces, email, social media, mobile search and applications - and the list will only continue to expand as technology evolves. The experience shoppers have with your brand across each of these channels matters, and the stronger your brand presence on each, the more new customers you’ll acquire and repeat purchases you’ll drive. An IDC Retail Insights report found retailers utilizing multichannel strategies saw a 15-35% increase in average transaction size, along with a 5-10% increase in loyalty customers’ profitability.
1. Integrate Your Brand Messaging Across All Channels
You’ve taken the time, energy, and resources to develop your brand style and voice. Strengthen its impact by ensuring your brand’s imagery and messaging are clear and consistent. A shopper on your eCommerce site or in your brick-and-mortar store should instantly recognize an email or social media account by your brand. Use integrated messaging to help customers move seamlessly from search and social, through mobile or desktop versions of your site, all the way through to purchase.
2. Optimize Your Site for Search and Mobile
Online retail sales continue to grow every year. Worldwide eCommerce sales are projected to exceed $1 trillion in 2016. To get a portion of those sales, shoppers need to be able to find your site. Do you know what percentage of your site’s visitors are coming from organic search, or what keywords people were searching on that brought them to your site? it is imperative to invest in optimizing your website for search. Search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM) are essential ways to drive people who are looking for products like yours to your site. Utilize tools like Google Analytics, Google Adwords, Google Search Console to start tracking and improving your site’s SEO and SEM.
Don’t forget that website optimization extends to mobile search and site performance as well. Smartphones sparked the “always on” commerce movement by connecting customers to the web through their mobile phones 24/7. Today, 30% of online retail purchases take place on mobile phones. Bottomline: If you’re not web and mobile-first, you’re behind.
3. Embrace Email Targeting and Personalization
It’s important to build and nurture your customers and potential buyers. Although email is an effective way to do just that, many retailers don’t prioritize their email strategies.
Did you know that 41% of consumers in a recent survey said they would buy more from retailers that send them personalized emails? Personalized emails are 6 times more effective than bulk emails at lifting transaction rates and revenue-per-email. Studies prove that when customers are targeted for more personalized offers, email open rates increased by 39%, emails were seen as more relevant by 34% of email recipients, and unsubscribe rates reduced by 28%. Plus, timely, targeted emails can help to reduce shopping cart abandonment rates.
4. Develop a Social Presence
According to Shopify, product discovery via social media and ad targeting has increased 202% in recent years. With more platforms embracing the ‘buy button,’ it’s easier than ever for shoppers to purchase a product directly from their favorite social media channels.
And even if your customers aren’t buying directly through social, they likely using social platforms to find, research, discuss, share, and engage with your brand. Identify which social sites your target customers are interacting on and focus on developing a branded presence there.
5. Understand Your Customers Through Data
If you don’t understand your customers - who they are, what they items they want, and how they want to shop - then none of the tactics listed above will be very impactful. The best way to truly know your customers is through regular interactions and data analysis.
As the sayings go, data doesn’t lie and you can’t manage what you can’t track. Implement the necessary tracking to properly measure and evaluate buying behaviors and patterns. The insights you glean from your retail data will provide optimization guidance.