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Top 5 Omnichannel Commerce Trends for 2021 and Beyond

Customer is King! This age-old business mantra doesn't change no matter whichever platform the customer chooses for a purchase. It might be about walking into a brick-and-mortar store or scrolling through an online shopping app.

Today, customers can enjoy the best of both worlds when it comes to shopping. Thanks to Omnichannel Commerce! In the present technology-driven era, customer's cart does not just include their purchased products but also convenience, engagement and motivation to come back and shop again. While many of us are familiar with the buzzword 'Omnichannel', some are still unaware of what is omnichannel commerce and its power in the retail world.

In this article, we will talk about the top 5 Omnichannel Commerce trends that will make a major impact in the future. But, before we dig in, let us understand the meaning of omnichannel and what it means for your business in the present and coming future.

Understanding Omnichannel Commerce

Customers now identify your brand across various channels where they can connect, interact and tell you about their likes and dislikes. Omnichannel commerce (also known as Omnichannel retail) is a multichannel approach that majorly focuses on delivering a seamless and unified experience to the customers for online as well as offline purchases.

Omnichannel approach has become a major revenue driver today. If you're still curious, here's a better view of what traditional, single-channel, multi-channel and omnichannel marketing looks like.

omnichannel marketing

Figure 1: Understanding various ways of marketing

Here are some major factors included in Omnichannel Shopping:

  • Creating an impactful physical and digital presence.
  • Focusing on customer experience and personalization across multiple touchpoints.
  • Ability to use mobile efficiently for communication and marketing.
  • Effortless purchase, exchange, return and transactions.
  • Fully integrated approach for merchandizing, marketing, marketplaces and fulfilment.

Before we go ahead, here's a question for you. Are you a coffee lover?

If yes, allow us to share one of the best examples of omnichannel marketing strategy.

start

Figure 2: Starbucks FREE WI-FI Marketing

In March 2018, Starbucks gave free wi-fi to their customers where they had to first register with an email id and called them "Digitally Registered Customers." This helped Starbucks in adding 10 million customers to their database. Further, they rewarded customers with unique offers like 'Free Drinks' for their loyalty. They often come up with creative ideas on a regular basis and give the best services to their customers.

Bottom line: You just can't miss out on omnichannel commerce trends for 2021 and beyond. Hence, keep reading for the best ones.

Here are the top 5 trends related to omnichannel commerce you must know for 2021 and beyond:

Convenience of Buy Online, Pick up in-store (BOPIS)

pick up in store

Figure 3: Buy Online, Pick up in-store way of omnichannel commerce

If you think that online stores have taken over the physical outlets, you're mistaken. The post-Covid world is a perfect example showing that people still like to shop from stores and wish to have more convenient options while doing so. Buy Online, Pick Up In-Store, also known as click-and-collect has been a blessing for retailers to connect with their customers using their offline as well as online experience together.

A report by McKinsey proves that 56% of customers will continue using BOPIS even after COVID-19. People love curbside pickup facility where they can receive their orders outside the store without even leaving their cars. Along with this, the reserve-online-pickup-in-store facility allows people to order items for in-store pick-up and pay only once they arrive.

The pandemic has affected the commerce industry. However, the benefits of omnichannel commerce have helped the brick-and-mortar stores to bounce back with full force. Thanks to BOPIS!

Learn more about BOPIS here!

Selling with impressive and expressive videos

omnichannel video marketing

Figure 4: Online selling with impressive videos

Recently all of us have witnessed one important thing when it comes to online shopping for any brand. Content+ Commerce + Creativity = Successful Omnichannel Commerce Strategy.

With the increasing use of mobile devices, it becomes essential to analyze how millennials shop and how they can enjoy a seamless experience while shopping. Videos have helped people in engaging with brands in the easiest ways without investing too much time. Platforms such as Instagram, Pinterest and Facebook are already helping out brands with their 'Shoppable Content'.

Facebook live, TikTok and Instagram videos with all the product details are just a few to name with the interactive visual element of shopping. On the other hand, as many people still wish to buy from brick-and-mortar outlets, videos can help them with product reviews, features and compare prices while they casually browse on their mobile device. Not to forget, short videos like Instagram reels are helping the commerce world in tons of ways by presenting the best content for the audience with a shorter attention span.

Better and Safer Contactless Payments with Digital Wallets

online payment methods

Figure 5: Secure & convenient payments with digital wallets

More than 70.3 billion real-time payment transactions were done worldwide in 2020 according to a report by ACI Worldwide. Ten years ago, nobody would have believed that digital payments will drive the technology-oriented future. From leaving the house with enough cash to paying for the most expensive things using a mobile phone, the world has gone cashless. Various digital payment options like Google Pay, PayPal, Stripe, SecurePay and Braintree have played a major role in safer and convenient transactions along with omnichannel commerce platforms.

A consumer always loves to have multiple options to pay anytime and anywhere for what they love. We all know how Google Pay created a buzz during its initial days by offering cashback with scratch cards and created customer engagement. Today, we all know how India is progressing with their digital transactions using Google Pay to pay for everything from groceries to electricity bills. Ecommerce giants like Amazon are continuously growing with their easy-to-use digital payments as a major part of their omnichannel commerce strategy. It is time for you to make the most of this trend too.

Power of Social Media in the World of Shopping

power of social media

Figure 6: Online Shopping via Social Media Platforms

Did you know that 72% of consumers used social media to discover and buy new products? These impressive stats were showcased in a study by Statista. The sheer volume of options available for various products can leave a shopper confused regarding what to buy.

An omnichannel commerce strategy that provides personalized information across platforms can help in better decision making. One of these platforms is social media.

We've already talked about shoppable videos but there is much more than one can do with an eCommerce business. Instagram checkout is one of the trending options where the customers can enjoy a seamless path to purchase without leaving the app.

Along with this, people love to engage with content that talks about genuine reviews and feedbacks. As people scroll through their feed and love a product that they might wish to buy, conversations and comments from other users help them to make a call. Built-in shopping features at platforms like Facebook marketplace are helping big and small brands to grow and connect with their target audience in a better way. Along with these, promotional coupons, offers and social media influencers are highly beneficial for retailers as well as buyers.

Bringing Online and Offline Shopping World Together with AR and VR

augmented virtual reality

Figure 7: Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality for better shopping experience

Online stores are a great option to buy anything from anywhere. Physical stores allow the customers to understand the look and feel of the products. What if customers could get both the benefits at once? This is where Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are changing the commerce dynamics. If you've used Lenskart app, you might have already witnessed the same by trying out different styles of frames suitable for your face while making a purchase.

Another example of using AR in commerce is IKEA Place where customers can view over 2000 furniture products from the mobile app and check how it might add beauty to their homes. With 3D views, close to perfect room dimensions and 98% accuracy, IKEA place is driving sales in a unique and impressive way. While the digital landscape growing rapidly, virtual try-ons, preview placements and social media filters are increasing revenue along with providing immersive experience and convincing customers to visit again. Missing out on this omnichannel approach trend might not be a good option if you wish to provide a wholesome shopping experience.

We hope you've got your answer for 'What is omnichannel commerce and how do I use it for my business?' Big brands like Disney, Virgin Atlantic, Bank of America, Pepperfry and many are already implementing omnichannel strategies to understand their customer journey to get profit and great results.

There are tons of benefits of omnichannel commerce for various retailers. Here are a few to mention:

  • Customer Loyalty
  • Better Customer Data Collection
  • Engaging Customer Experience
  • Increased ROI
  • Better customer retention rates
  • Connecting Online & Offline Experience

Are you ready to enjoy the benefits of omnichannel shopping?

The post-pandemic world is highly driven by omnichannel approach for commerce and will continue to do so. While you've learnt about all the omnichannel trends that can help your business, you might still need a helping hand to get started.

Altudo can be a suitable partner in providing experience-driven commerce for your customers. Working with the best industry experts, Altudo can help you with seamless experience, personalization and contextual commerce.

Sounds interesting? Drop a Hi! to marketing@altudo.co and our team will contact you with the best solutions.

Ebook
2021 Omnichannel Guide : A Four-Pillar Approach to Holistic Commerce Success
onmichannel
Neha Gore


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