Today, with customers bouncing between a plethora of channels to access your brand, it makes no sense to only be present on one. Or worse, use the spray and pray method across all channels where your customers may or may not be.
This is where omnichannel marketing comes in. Omnichannel marketing creates a seamless message that adjusts to your customer based on their behavior through your sales funnel, providing the ultimate personalized customer experience.
We know today that a personalized and streamlined customer experience is becoming more and more important for customers, so much so that they’re willing to hand over more cash for it.
That doesn’t just sound smarter, it actually is: 86% of customers are willing to pay up to 25% more for products and services just to have a better customer experience.
Throughout this article, we’re going to contrast omnichannel marketing with other marketing automation methods, and show how it can boost your e-commerce customer experience across the channels where your customers really are.
Why Focusing on Single Channel or Multichannel Marketing Automation Limits Potential
When it comes to creating an e-commerce marketing strategy, there are quite a few pitfalls to avoid. For customers that need an average of 6-8 touchpoints with a brand across a variety of channels, it’s in your interest to be present on those channels.
But which channels should you be on and how many will be critical to your success in creating a great customer experience?
Single Channel Focus: The One-Hit Wonder
Many retailers tend to focus solely on the one channel that brings the biggest ROI. Due to a super low entry cost for already warm leads, many pour their time and energy into email marketing automation.
If the GDPR taught us anything, it’s that email isn’t everything. And in the blink of an eye (or over a two-year period many ignored), an often relied-upon channel can be decimated.
Like anything, email has its limits. And when your weekly newsletter and cart-abandonment campaigns fall short, it’s time to bring out the big guns.
Sure, you could use email and basic marketing automation that’s a one-size fits all solution, which might work for a while. But when it comes to sophisticated omnichannel marketing, it’s time to look into MailChimp alternatives to find a solution that’s truly created for e-commerce.
The issue isn’t really with email marketing, it’s with online retailers putting all their efforts into the same channel.
This is the age of the omnichannel customer, and as we saw, customers are expecting brands to be too.
You know that perfect marketing storm: getting the right message to the right person at the right time? Email marketing automation might get the right message to the right person- but how can you be sure the time is right and they’re ready to buy? How can you tailor an automated message to hit the customer right when they need it most?
This is the big difference between relying on automation and having an omnichannel strategy that responds to exactly where your customer is in your sales funnel. An email tailored to welcome a new customer probably won’t ring as personal for a returning customer with items already in their cart.
But what if you could send a text message or push notification when you’re having a big sale or when you know that the customer just scrolled through your clearance section?
Think about it- when was the last time you just deleted an email without opening it? When was the last time you said, “Ugh, I’ll read it later.”
We expect emails. We get them all the time.
However, approximately 90% of text messages are read within the first three minutes of delivery, offering your message precision email just can’t touch.
Like with email, as long as you’re not bombarding your customer and you’re very conscious about when you’re sending your push and SMS notifications, this can be a powerful, instantaneous channel for you to enjoy.
Multichannel Marketing: The Spray and Pray
Worse than focusing on one sole channel to reach your customers is being present on too many channels. Firstly, it doesn’t make sense to be on the channels that your target audience is not.
For example, you wouldn’t necessarily target men in their 50s on Pinterest. That wouldn’t make sense demographically. Targeting women in their 30s interested in crafting and recipes? It’s Pinterest all day.
But this doesn’t stop many online retailers from pushing out the same cookie-cutter message to each channel indiscriminately, hoping someone, anyone, will bite.
Going back to that right message to the right person at the right time- it’s important for you to be where your customers are, which means all the channels where they spend their time.
It’s just as critical that your message is tailored to those customers.
For example, omnichannel marketing can allow you to leverage some powerful channels that have little to no competition but have high visibility for your customer base, like using Facebook Messenger.
Let’s say you have a customer that’s already purchased from you and is in the process of re-entering your sales funnel. They see a retargeted Facebook ad and click on your profile in lieu of the ad. Once on your Facebook page, they get a pop-up message from your store offering a 10% off promo code on the accessories that go with the items your customer has recently purchased.
We have a tailored experience right down to what the customer already purchased from you. This makes the message incredibly pertinent, and well-timed.
The right omnichannel marketing tool can unite the channels you use to engage your customers into a single message that stays consistent no matter where your customer lands. Not only that, it helps you alter how your message sounds depending on the customer, what they purchased, and where they are in their purchase cycle.
Being able to tailor that message around your customer will help you create a better customer experience, retain more customers, and improve your ROI.