Omnichannel Strategy (With Definitions and How to Implement)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published May 26, 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

As technology advances, businesses are also choosing to update their strategies to be more relevant and convenient for customers. Companies that adopt an omnichannel strategy can help their customers gain access to more product options and offers and enjoy a more efficient digital experience. Understanding how to implement this strategy can help businesses integrate various channels and devices to ensure customers receive seamless transactions.

In this article, we define omnichannel strategy, describe why it's important, offer the differences between a single and multi-channel strategy, and list the steps to implement this style of marketing to level up.

What is an omnichannel strategy?

An omnichannel strategy is a marketing approach that delivers a consistent brand experience to its customers across multiple online and offline channels. The goal of this strategy is to connect the digital and physical experience to users. It integrates various online and offline communication methods, such as websites, social media platforms, emails, retail stores, events, and exhibitions. Businesses can use omnichannel marketing to deliver a consistent and compelling brand message.

Why is an omnichannel strategy important?

Omnichannel marketing is important because it can help businesses attract a larger customer base by creating a more efficient experience for customers at every stage of their shopping journey. It offers retailers the chance to be more readily available by integrating digital touchpoints.

This can be a way for a company to boost its sales and traffic by being available online and in stores. It can also create a more cohesive experience for users and business owners by combining several channels into one. Here are some other benefits to adopting omnichannel marketing methods:

Improving the customer experience

It's important for a company to be able to understand its customers. Customers interact with a business through multiple touch points, such as a retail store, company website, and social media platforms. Understanding how customers prefer to interact with a business can determine the marketing methods required in the future. When customers experience a seamless interaction with a business, they're more likely to come back again.

Increasing traffic

Many internet users spend more money than single-channel customers because they have access to more options. With every additional channel the customer uses, they become more valuable by spending more money shopping online and in-store. This generates revenue for the company and improves brand image.

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Improving customer loyalty

When a business has multiple options for customers to make a purchase, and if the purchases complete successfully, the customer is more likely to be a repeat customer. Omnichannel customers often spend more money on each transaction they make. This means that these customers are also more likely to recommend the brand to others.

Gaining a competitive advantage

An omnichannel selling strategy can help businesses gain access to a larger following with greater loyalty by creating a consistent and accessible brand experience for customers. As customers use more than one device and channel during a single shopping experience, it may be beneficial to make the business available on all the relevant channels. This can ensure that the business is ready for every sale opportunity.

Improving data collection

Trends are always evolving, and it's important for businesses to note these changes and alter their experience accordingly. The omnichannel marketing approach can track and monitor customers' behaviours, which can enable a business to create a unique experience for every interested customer. Companies have the ability to gather more information about their customers and market its products or services to them based on the results.

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What's the difference between single-channel, multi-channel, and omni-channel strategies?

Companies can have single or multiple channels to connect with their customers. Every business can customize their approach to best suit its customers and their desires. Here are some of the common channel strategies that companies use:

Single-channel strategy

This strategy refers to a company's effort to reach customers through one distribution channel. A single channel can be a website, retail store, or catalogue. This approach reduces the amount of money spent on marketing, but it also reduces the number of places customers can find the company to make secure purchases.

Multi-channel strategy

In a multichannel marketing strategy, a business can sell its product or services to customers through a variety of online and offline channels. Channels can include social media platforms, direct mail, storefronts, promotional events, and websites. This can allow businesses to interact with their customers on multiple touchpoints. It's important for companies to remain consistent on every channel so that customers can receive a simple and recognizable shopping experience.

Omni-channel strategy

The omnichannel approach is similar to the multichannel approach. The only significant difference between the two is that the omnichannel approach can connect all of a business's channels and provide a more seamless experience for customers. Through this approach, companies can align their goals, branding, objectives, and messages across every channel. By aligning these factors, businesses can use related channels to improve marketing efforts and deliver a better customer experience overall.

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How to implement an omnichannel strategy in seven easy steps

With omnichannel marketing methods, customers can also interact with a business in new ways. Everyone involved can receive information about one another to create a more positive shopping experience. Customer experience drives omnichannel marketing. It's important for businesses to acknowledge each experience and improve the strategies accordingly. The goal of implementing this type of strategy is to allow customers to interact with a business with greater ease and fluidity, switching between different channels as they prefer. Here are seven steps to create an omnichannel channel strategy that can work for a business:

1. Understand the target audience

It's important to keep in mind what's best for the customer rather than the business. Once the customers are happy, then the business can thrive as well. Take note of customers' preferences and behaviours across every platform, device, and medium that they use daily. Speak to customers face-to-face and virtually, through online meetings and focus group sessions to encourage feedback and leverage the power of social media and social listening tools. Use data to understand how customers behave and create solutions to address their challenges.

2. Map the customer's journey

After identifying who the target audiences are and what channels and devices they use to interact with the business, you can map the shopping journey. Each customer can experience a unique shopping journey and may also have different preferences at every stage of the shopping process. It's important that customers receive individual attention regarding their preferences.

This means businesses can create content and designs specific to each customer category. By mapping out a customer's shopping experience, it can be easier to identify the areas where to implement or improve omnichannel experiences and assign resources accordingly.

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3. Choose the right channels

It can be beneficial for a business to research which channels their customers prefer using. After identifying which channels may be the most successful, you can use those tools to implement a strategy from concept to implementation. It's important to do a thorough analysis before selecting each channel so that you can understand its purpose and implement it successfully.

4. Integrate all channels for a seamless experience

Omnichannel marketing is the most successful when every channel integrates to provide the easiest experience possible to customers. Use the right technology to follow customers across every channel. As customers move from viewing social ads to reading reviews on a website to purchasing from a physical store, it's crucial that businesses maintain the context between each interaction.

5. Be consistent across all channels

One of the most important factors for an omnichannel marketing strategy's success is consistency across all channels. Ensure that the branding, messages, offers, and promotions are all consistent on every channel and device. For instance, when a customer reaches out for help through the app or contacts the call center, it's important for the accuracy and efficiency of the response to remain the same. This can also increase customer loyalty as they gain more trust in the brand.

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6. Measure the performance

Successfully implementing new marketing strategies requires comprehensively tracking and measuring its performance to ensure it's working to the best of its abilities. Businesses can use the right metrics, behavioural tracking, and analytical tools to gather insight into customer experience and feedback. Use customer relationship management, also known as CRM data, social media data and online search behaviour, to understand how customers behave with new strategies to address their challenges.

7. Invest in customer service

Customer service is an essential part of adopting an omnichannel marketing strategy. It's important to build an exceptional online and offline customer service program for your customers. This helps customers reach out to the business whenever they want.

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