We find out what omnichannel is and how to work with it.
What does the term omnichannel mean?
We are talking about a system that combines several channels of interaction with customers into one stream, considered as a single whole.
There is a so-called sales funnel. This is the order of the client’s actions from the first acquaintance with a service or product to its purchase / order. Usually it is drawn as the simplest order of actions, which is static at the same time – the client saw the ad, went through it and made a purchase. But in reality, a potential client acts chaotically, there is no clear order from acquaintance to purchase.
In the course of interacting with your business, a person can go to competitors, start looking for alternative solutions, visit the site 10 times and collect product data from different sources. Therefore, he will contact your product in a variety of ways. The more of them are involved in promotion, the more chances of a successful conversion.
Omnichannel means focusing on the experience and behavior of the client, and not on a separate channel of communication with him. This is the key difference between omnichannel and multichannel (multichannel), the model of which provides for several communication paths, but, as a rule, only one is used.
As mentioned above, the client behaves in an unpredictable manner. Any of the channels of interaction with him can play a decisive role in the successful completion of the transaction, or it may happen that each channel will, on an equal basis with the others, influence the success of the business.
Take conditional freelancers, for example. How do they learn about them and why do they turn to them? Several options can be distinguished at once:
Freelance work is pretty well known and can be stumbled across the net.
Some of my friends used the services of this person and recommended him.
The freelancer has an excellent portfolio that perfectly matches the preferences of the potential customer.
Think only one will work? Perhaps, but not 100% of the time. Sometimes 2, 3 or even 10 channels are triggered. You need to understand that most customers will scrupulously study the market and try to find out as much as possible about the business / performer. Therefore, it is imperative that each channel be efficient enough in terms of communication, deliver the correct message and operate at full capacity, while complementing the other channels.
How to get channel data?
Information can be obtained from any analytical system connected to the resource.
In Google Analytics, the corresponding menu is located in the Conversions menu, Multichannel submenu. This section visually displays each channel of interaction with users who have turned into a conversion. It is possible to determine not only the number of communication paths that influenced the choice of a person, but also the time it took him to make a decision.
In Yandex.Metrica, similar data can be found in the Sources menu.
How to integrate omnichannel into your business?
The process is straightforward. You just need to study the popular channels of interaction with users and figure out how to use them for the good of the business. Below are some of the most effective methods to attract and retain traffic. Let’s see how you can use them and evaluate their effectiveness. The channels described can be implemented at one time or one by one. You can choose any of them, but it is better to use several at once or even all at the same time.
Set up contextual and targeted advertising
For many companies, these are the main sources of traffic. Such advertising helps to collect traffic based on specific keywords. The implementation of this type of advertising requires almost no specific skills or huge financial investments, while a properly configured context / target almost guarantees traffic and conversions. But you need to understand that this method will work effectively only if there is demand.
Sometimes the influx of traffic through contextual advertising is seasonal, which significantly limits its capabilities. In addition, this type of interaction with the user does not provide an opportunity to offer him more than indicated in the ad.
Get in touch via messengers
The ability to ask a question through a convenient messenger bribes customers. They don’t have to mess around with awkward forms to connect with a business. You can write a message and get a response through the same program in which he communicates with friends. Therefore, any brand should create accounts in all top messengers in order to always be in touch with potential customers and not to miss those who wanted to ask a question, but did not do it, because they did not find a convenient method for communicating.
In addition, instant messengers are a great way to remind yourself from time to time with messages about promotions or special offers.
The effectiveness of the channel can be estimated by counting the number of calls through instant messengers and comparing it with the conversion.
Create a resource with interesting content
A blog with quality content can have a positive impact on the conversion rate of almost any business. It doesn’t matter if you sell postcards, earn money as a lover, or own a large clothing store.
Content marketing is a powerful mechanism for influencing potential customers. It performs two functions at once: firstly, it makes it possible to tell about your product in all colors and convey useful information to a potential customer / buyer in a convenient format. Secondly, it increases the level of trust of people who see an expert in the company.
For implementation, you need to select a semantic core, draw up a technical specification on its basis and hire copywriters who will write materials. You can evaluate the effectiveness of the channel through Yandex.Webvisor – it will show how many people read blog articles and buy something.
Hiring a good SMM specialist
Social media is one of the key methods of introducing potential customers to a business. In addition, this is an opportunity to discuss the brand with other users, “meet” with real customers and learn firsthand about the specifics of the business.
But more importantly, SMM is shaping the brand image now. It determines how the company will look in the eyes of most users. An interesting social media profile noticeably increases the loyalty of existing customers and attracts new ones.
To assess the effectiveness of a channel, you can analyze the number of likes, reposts, comments and subscribers in relation to the number of conversions after the introduction of a new communication channel.
Get in touch via email
Loyal customers will definitely want to receive emails with useful information from a brand that they like. Through letters, you can convey a variety of information: make newsletters, talk about new products, send digests, and so on.
True, before starting, you need to collect a database of mailing addresses and think over the entire mailing strategy. To do this, you will need to hire a specialist in the field of email marketing.
To measure the effectiveness, you can use the ratio of email subscriptions to conversions.
Examples of the use of omnichannel in business
It is not even necessary to talk about specific brands or services here. Take a look at how banks work. They exist in all social networks, communicate through instant messengers, send mailings, blog, etc. In this regard, the audience of social networks and blogs overlaps with clients of the same banks.
And it works with any brands, even purely informational ones. The same media always exist on social networks or messengers.
Omnichannel is a massive phenomenon necessary to attract and retain a user.
Instead of a conclusion
Answers to a few more questions related to omnichannel:
To evaluate each channel, you need to divide the conversion between them equally, excluding internal and direct conversions. That is, if you have four channels, each should be assigned a 25% conversion rate (excluding the two exceptions mentioned above). And then calculate the contribution of each channel to the total.
If it seems that the channel is bringing little profit and is not effective enough, then it is worth waiting and conducting a deeper analysis after a while. Some channels “diverge” only after six months. If there is no result even after this “test” period, then you should think about changing the campaign and creatives.
Omnichannel is not a cheap pleasure. The cost varies from business to business, but is never budget enough to recommend omnichannel to everyone universally.
Self-introduction of omnichannel allows you to gain complete control over the situation, but creates too great risks. Not having enough knowledge and skills, it is better to turn to professionals.
That’s all. Now you have a deeper understanding of the topic of omnichannel and understand how it works. For many companies, this model has long become the basis for promotion, so it is worth at least trying it out in your business.