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Omnichannel experience Archives - NVISION

Three Ways of Capturing What Customers Want Before They Do

thinking girl with digital shopping symbols

Advancement of technology with limitless digital bandwidth opened up a new array of channels for today’s consumers to be more aggressive in engaging with brands. More importantly, it is changing the way consumers shop, forcing brands to present a superior omnichannel experience to meet the expectations and demands of consumers. However, some brands struggle to do so because they lack sufficient awareness of their customers’ needs and preferences.

According to Jorge Amar, Julian Raabe, and Stefan Roggenhofer in their McKinsey.com article, “Companies seeking to keep pace with industry leaders must embark on an omnichannel transformation — one that views touchpoints not in isolation but as part of a seamless customer journey. And since customer journeys aren’t simple and linear but a series of handoffs between traditional and digital channels that can vary significantly by customer type, an effective strategy requires an in-depth understanding of what customers truly want.”

In order to ensure success, brands need to focus on understanding the preferences and wants of their target audience.

Omni-channel-Illustration-shopping

Provide Quality Digital Customer Care

More and more customers prefer to shop digitally and seek out customer care online. Many brands have capitalized on this trend by focusing on developing a robust omnichannel presence. However, brands that design a digital channel prematurely often fail to provide adequate online support channels for their customers.

Some brand marketers believe that the customer’s desire for customer-employee interactions is diminishing due to growing technology. But, trends indicate that the volume of engagement and the number of touchpoints actually continue to increase. This shows that brands need to ensure that they are providing effective and positive engagement with customers through digital channels.

Brand marketers who fail to provide adequate customer care online find that customers make multiple visits to their website in order to receive the help and assistance that they require. This leaves shoppers frustrated and dissatisfied, decreasing sales and conversions for your brand. Concentrate on efforts to understand how to effectively help your customers, and ensure that you offer productive digital avenues through which they can seek assistance.

Know Your Shoppers’ Personas

To effectively reach and engage with customers, brand marketers need to be aware of the different types of segments they’re targeting. The four most common categories of shoppers include: digital by lifestyle, digital by choice, digital by need, and offline society. Each consumer group has unique shopping needs, and brands need to prepare marketing approaches for each of them.

As Amar, Raabe, and Roggenhofer explain, “Best practice is to design primary service for each segment, using contact volume distribution and persona profiles that differentiate by digital behavior to determine engagement strategies and the necessary investments in each channel.” Different types of consumers will respond to different marketing tactics, so brand marketers need to get creative to effectively reach a large audience of shoppers.

More and more customers demand personalized journey fit their needs. The first step for brands to achieve this is to understand the shopping preference of their target consumer groups.

Some consumer segments respond more to online advertisements, whereas others are more touched by physical marketing materials such as direct mail that drives them to brick-and-mortar stores where they can experience a personal connection with the brand. Therefore, brands should focus on developing marketing strategies that serve each persona group based on their shopping preferences in conjunction with omnichannel digital efforts.

cashier handing credit card back to customer - sales person

Train Employees to Put the Customer First

A superb omnichannel experience does not stop at the completed purchasing transaction. It now extends to seamless customer handoffs across the channel from pre-purchase interaction to after-purchase follow-ups by the customer service, via online or face to face. To provide a superb omnichannel experience, brands need to recognize the importance of employee training to fulfill the pre and post-purchase phases of the customer journey.

Well trained brand employees should be able to identify customer needs and cater to their services accordingly. In order to do so, they must receive the right kind of training. Ensure that your training is creative, effective, and designed with the customer in mind. The better the coaching, the better the service, and it translates into higher demand and increased sales for your brand. It’s integral that your workforce has the right skill sets to offer effective customer care. Eventually, this will help to refine the strategy based on brand performance in the long run.

When complex issues arise, employees need to be able to provide feasible solutions and give customers a seamless experience. Positive interactions help employees develop meaningful relationships with consumers, which serves to drive sales and bring in a higher number of loyal customers for your brand. The happier a customer feels when they leave your store or website, it’s more likely that they will recommend your product to others.

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No two consumers are the same. Each consumer segment has unique shopping needs and responds to different marketing methods. Brands need to make an effort to understand what their target customers want and implement ways to effectively deliver it.

Providing high-quality customer service and productive assistance through digital channels, personalizing the shopping experience for target groups, and training brand representatives to follow a customer-centric mindset are useful ways to deepen your understanding of what your customers want, generate demand, and drive sales.

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How Omnichannel Grocers Can Keep Up with the Digital Age of Shopping

While most consumers still prefer to do their grocery shopping in person, the presence of online grocery shopping is becoming more prevalent and is predicted to triple over the next ten years. This is creating new challenges and opportunities for both brand marketers and the consumer packaged goods industry.

Consumers don’t fully recognize the convenience of online grocery shopping yet, but omnichannel grocers can capitalize on the e-commerce market by customizing the online experience to their customers and incentivizing them to order online more than once.

According to Stephen Caine and Michelle Paratore at Bain & Company, “Only 42% of first-time users say online grocery shopping saves time, but it gets easier the more they try it.”  If grocers can keep customers coming back to online ordering, the likelihood of the customers using the same method and consistent brand products increase in the future.

So, what exactly do grocers need to do to prepare for the rising digital age of shopping?

online grocery shopping

Create a Convenient Online User Experience

Customers still consider shopping at a physical grocery store to be more convenient than attempting to navigate online grocery shopping. Grocers need to bridge the gap by breaking down the online experience to make it easy and convenient for the consumer to find what they need while also saving them money by suggesting cheaper, similar products.

The key is also personalizing the journey for online shoppers. Grocers can design tools that can touch and influence online shoppers’ decision-making process, such as making product recommendations based on the customer’s previously-purchased items and their shopping patterns.

Another tactic is to minimize the amount of effort required by the consumers by providing them with a visual “shelf” that contains their frequent and repeat orders. By doing so, grocers can make online shopping quicker, easier, and therefore more desirable for its customers.

Incentivize Customers to Shop Online with Your Brand

According to Caine and Paratore, “75% of online grocery shoppers say they are still using the first online grocer they tried.” Most people have a trusted local grocery store where they always shop. So, if local grocers create an online shopping platform that effectively reels in their loyal, regular customers, the likelihood that they will transition their grocery shopping with the same grocer online is almost guaranteed (the home-store bias).

Grocers can offer rewards to incentivize consumers to continue ordering online. Promotions such as coupons for relevant products, special sales, and spending rewards can serve to both personalize the customer’s experience, and to entice them to make repeat orders with your brand by making checkout quick and easy.

This is also a great opportunity for cross-channel engagement via things like direct mail marketing. Sending customers postcards with URLs or QR codes to unlock the rewards that they can redeem for personalized online coupons is a powerful way to build brand loyalty.

mobile grocery shopping

Offer Cutting-Edge Online Features that Fit the Consumer’s Lifestyle

Many consumers still use physical grocery lists to keep track of their shopping needs. Grocers can target this routine practice by designing an online feature that enables shoppers to log their frequently-purchased items and search for them quickly and easily.

Grocers can take it one step further and even create tools to relate to the customer’s lifestyle preferences. For example, for particularly health-conscious shoppers, grocers can offer recommendations for products and recipes that best fit their healthy lifestyle online and offline.

It’s all about personalizing the experience for each shopper, so they feel seen, understood, and valued by your brand. “Retailers who can deliver frictionless omnichannel experiences by investing in digital experiences and tools that save time for consumers shopping online or in stores will emerge as winners in this rapidly changing grocery landscape,” explain Caine and Paratore.

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While not occurring rapidly, consumers are beginning to transition into the digital age of grocery shopping. Many still find it more convenient to shop at a physical grocery store, but with the emergence of digital generations – such as Millennials and Generation Z – is expected to take the CPG and retail industry into the next chapter of the digital grocery shopping era.

Practical and data-based online tools are an essential part of the online experience that “do the work” for customers to shorten the buying cycle. Based on the customer’s shopping pattern, grocers can provide recommendations for items, store favorite item information for a timely reminder, offer coupons and special discounts specific toward their frequented items to help them accomplish their routine shopping practices.

By understanding how to transition into the digital age of grocery shopping, omnichannel grocers can capitalize on the growth of the online shopping world and boost the effectiveness and efficiency of their physical marketing activities as well. And by working with a trusted partner who can help you take advantage of this up-and-coming shopping platform, your brand can compete and win on the quality and convenience of your online user experience.

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Why NVISION?

For more than three decades we’ve partnered with Fortune 500 companies to deliver marketing operations solutions. Led by a strategic account management team, we’ll help you develop, procure, fulfill and distribute printed collateral, signage, point-of-purchase displays, direct mail, branded merchandise and much more.

LEARN MORE