The evolution of technology has left major changes permeating business models and consumer habits in the aftermath of the pandemic. One of the most obvious is the shift to digital. BARE shares an article from El Telégrafo on the omnichannel experience.
In 2020, it was identified that 1 out of every 3 Ecuadorians chose for the first time a digital channel to make their purchases. In this same period, e-commerce in the country reached a volume of $2.300 million, which represented a growth of $700 million, compared to 2019.
Although physical stores are not dead, consumers are ready and increasingly opting for the benefits of new technologies in their shopping habits, whether for security or accessibility. Consequently, 2022 will be an even more challenging year for retailers, betting on digitalization and omnichannel to improve the value proposition and customer experience, as well as meeting new demands will be vital to stay in the market.
Francisco Maestre, General Manager of Opinno Ecuador mentions that: “We are facing a hybrid consumer who is looking at products and brands through a new channel, online, opting for options and tools that make their purchases a faster and simpler process, without leaving aside traditional transactions. In this context, placing the physical catalog on a website is not enough, an exceptional omnichannel experience is needed, one that generates loyalty with customers, that solves their needs in a timely manner, that is a perfect combination between digital and physical shopping, but above all that is personalized.” So, how to do it?
1. Designing platforms with intuitive and user-friendly navigation
Brands must facilitate an easy, seamless and consistent customer experience across their different channels. This requires the development of user-friendly interfaces, in which the user feels comfortable and secure throughout the purchase process. It should also work on a responsive design, taking care of every detail in each device, in order to strengthen the use of digital channels and not affect the conversion.
2. Customer – Centric approach
It goes beyond personalization and good service, it is about aligning business strategies and the supply of products and/or services to the needs of users and/or customers, from the first contact with the company to the sales and after-sales process. Tools such as the Customer Journey Map will make it possible to know who the customer is, what characteristics he/she has and what his/her relationship with the brand is like, in order to define the best strategy.
3. Technology and Data
Technology is the key element and facilitator of an omnichannel strategy, but it is not enough if there is no infrastructure that connects the data from the different customer interactions and that allows to analyze them in real-time. When a customer interacts with the brand through different channels, the flow of data it provides is enormous, and converting it into useful information will make it possible to improve their experience, personalizing content, special offers, etc.
4. Integration of online and offline stores
Consumers are looking for options that facilitate their decision-making and are faster, both online and offline, but without sacrificing personalized and human service. For example, when a person books an item online to pick it up or try it out in a physical store and the process happens naturally, leaving behind the endless queues, without obstacles and with a rewarding experience, it is clear that the systems are integrated and that the whole team has access to the same information.
5. Security and transparency
There is a growing number of consumers who are aware of how vulnerable their data can be if it is handed over to brands or companies that do not guarantee its protection and security. In this sense, having data protection regulations and policies, as well as a cybersecurity strategy, is essential when creating digital experiences for customers.
A successfully implemented omnichannel strategy and experience bring cost reduction and improved efficiency, proactivity in the customer relationship, improved customer experience and increased sales revenue by 20-30%, as omnichannel shoppers have a higher propensity to purchase than multichannel shoppers.
To conclude, Maestre emphasizes that the new consumer habits that have been formed as a result of the pandemic will not be temporary, they will last beyond this crisis and the challenge for the retail sector will be to reinvent itself, adopt a digital mentality that allows the survival of its businesses and have allies who have the ability to guide them through each phase of the omnichannel process, from the identification of business needs to the measurement of final results.
Read the full original article here.
For more information on how to improve your services and customer experience, contact our Market Research and Customer Experience experts at BARE International today.