Omnichannel eCommerce is the New Multichannel

By:  Aaron Rubin, Founder & CEO of ShipHero

The definition of the prefix omni – is all, whereas the definition of multi – is many. So, how do you enhance your eCommerce business, marketing, sales and fulfillment to encompass everything, not just a lot of things? Since this is the future of eCommerce retail, it’s imperative that you and your organization figure it out. 

Moving from a multichannel approach to omnichannel hinges primarily on how you think about your customers and their buying journey. Instead of selling and marketing to your customers via different channels – online, in-store, mobile – you’ll have to start thinking more globally. Let’s examine how this works.

Your Customer Journey Should Be Cohesive

Customers expect a unified customer experience. This means that if they visit one of your brick-and-mortar locations, they want it to look and feel like visiting your website, scrolling through your social media accounts or using your mobile app. It’s about making the experience as seamless as possible. This also ties back to buy online, pick-up in-store (BOPIS), curbside pick-up and DTC. 

Target and Kohl’s are great examples of how to make omnichannel work. Both retailers have mobile apps that allow consumers to search for products in their local store or across all their stores; order directly from the app; order and pickup in store; and use their app-based wallet to keep track of all specials, coupons and payment methods. Additionally, both of these retailers leverage their in-store inventory to fulfill orders if the product is not available in the warehouse. 

To the customer, this is a seamless and integrated experience. Now, you may not have the footprint of a store like Target, but your warehouses and stores can still be leveraged together to offer the consumer the best experience and make the buying journey more enjoyable.

The Four Basic Tenets of Omnichannel eCommerce

To enhance the effectiveness of your omnichannel-centered tech, you also want to be sure you’re addressing each of the four essential keys to Omnichannel eCommerce: sales channels, marketing and advertising, operations and shipping and fulfillment

Your operations and fulfillment processes will fall flat without a strong sales funnel powered by the right marketing and advertising plan. These are the “first four” aspects of your business that must work together to get the kind of omnichannel eCommerce results you want.

The Right Technology is Your Best Investment

Now, to complete all of these tasks as outlined above, there is one particular tool you need – technology. And instead of just one or two pieces of tech, you’re going to need to make sure that your entire platform and its infrastructure are built to handle omnichannel eCommerce and enhance your success. 

Three Keys to Omnichannel Tech Infrastructure

  • Headless Commerce: Quite simply, headless commerce means that neither your front-end systems (POS, customer interface) or your backend systems (inventory/order management) are leading the way. Instead –  your front and back-end act independently of each other. Why does this matter? It’s a more flexible way to manage your eCommerce business and allows you to make changes easier than ever. This can include upgrading certain features or adding new options all together.
  • Customer Data: In order to provide a seamless and customizable customer experience, gathering, analyzing and using data of your customers’ behaviors is imperative. Customer Data Platforms (CDPs) can help you gather data from different sources like your website, social channels and mobile to bring everything together to create cohesive customer profiles. This data can then inform your omnichannel strategy as you strive to provide the best customer experience backed by actual data.
  • Omnichannel Marketing: Marketing to different consumers on different platforms is only a part of what omnichannel marketing really is; the true magic happens when you can target different messaging to customers depending on how they choose to engage with your brand. While your customers share many similar traits, they’re not all the same. The message you serve to Instagram is more than likely not the same message that will work on TikTok.  

In all of the instances above, having a flexible and well-appointed infrastructure will make it much easier for you and your team to manage an omnichannel approach.

Partner With Experts

The best news about omnichannel eCommerce is that it’s not a road you have to navigate alone. Warehouse management systems, shipping and fulfillment providers, as well as customer data platforms all work together to help you build the best omnichannel strategy for your business. Find the right omnichannel partner and you’ve already taken a step further than many of your competitors.

Schedule a meeting today with our experts to learn more about our warehouse management software built for ecommerce brands & 3PLs looking to run their best warehouse and how ShipHero works to ensure that organizations invest in the solutions that match their needs, to improve productivity, revenue and success.

Click HERE to Schedule a Meeting Today

Aaron Rubin, Founder & CEO

About the author:  Aaron Rubin is the Founder & CEO of ShipHero. He is responsible for planning and executing the overall vision and strategy of the organization. Rubin’s greatest strengths are leadership, change management, strategic planning and a passion for progression. He is known for having his finger on the pulse of ShipHero’s major initiatives, his entrepreneurial spirit, and keen business acumen. His leadership of ShipHero is grounded in providing excellent customer service that drives improved business operations. His passion for ShipHero comes from the culture and his ability to have an impact on the lives of employees, customers, partners, and investors.

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