It’s well known that the digital age has been disrupting the modern retail landscape for many years, and Covid 19 simply exacerbated this reality. Between changes in consumer behaviour, rising retail expectations and the increased cost of living, shoppers are more selective now than ever before when it comes to choosing who they shop with. The key to success lies in brands knowing what they can do to ensure that their customers keep choosing them!
Covid-19 brought about a rapid and wide-ranging set of conditions that no doubt induced behavioural change. Uncertainty and fear enforced “touch-less” retailing. Lockdowns introduced an imperative to isolate and universally double down on essentials. This also meant foregoing experiences and physical interactions with destinations, brands, services, and people. A shut-down of global supply chains and shortages of products and essential components, and pressures on disposable income forced a re-think in our consumption patterns. Shopping online, which already posed a threat to many physical retailers, grew in dominance.
The value in ‘experiential’ shopping
However, one area of retail became more popular than ever after the pandemic and showed that there were some things that could not be digitalised- the ‘experience’ of shopping. For most people, shopping is a release, an entertainment, and often a destination. Therefore, in this competitive market, businesses had to do more to attract and retain customers. New studies found that 80% of customers now consider the experience a company provides to be as important as its products and services. In addition, the digital age of smartphones and tablets has meant that brands can leverage mobile strategies such as push notifications and mobile apps, to improve their customer’s physical experience. If one thing has become clear post-pandemic, it’s that consumers want the best of both physical and digital worlds. Hence, the term ‘omnichannel retail’ is growing in popularity.
True understanding of customers, including when and how they interact across multiple channels within a brand, along with being able to seamlessly integrate every step of their journey, is now key to succeeding within retail. More consumers now value convenience and experience over anything else (sometimes even above price) and studies have shown that customers spend more with brands that have an omnichannel approach.
Where do you start with omnichannel?
Well, it all starts with having your customer at the heart of your operation. Brands need to leverage the volume and variety of data that is available to them, so they can better understand who their customers are and how they behave. Once this data has been collected, they can use it to create significant value for their shoppers, by improving their customer experience and ultimately, their brand engagement across all of their retail channels.
How can loyalty & customer engagement help with ‘omnichannel retail’?
Having a clear loyalty and/or customer engagement strategy is a great place to start the omnichannel adventure. To begin with, it represents the perfect opportunity to start collecting valuable customer insight. Then, by collecting and leveraging this data, retailers can increase personalisation, analyse customer behaviours, and meet rising consumer needs and expectations. With the right tools and structures in place, retailers can use loyalty and engagement programs to deliver frictionless journeys for their customers across all of their owned channels, in real-time and reach new levels of customer experience.
At Coniq, our Total Customer Engagement platform is designed with these very features in mind. We provide the most efficient way to generate revenue by understanding, anticipating and engaging with customers in real-time. Our omnichannel approach helps retailers collect, analyse and leverage data across physical and digital touchpoints, seamlessly.
Research has found that now more than ever before, consumers are demanding seamless retail experiences, alongside faster and more efficient services. As a result, retailers now require access to data-driven technology that can help them reinvent the way shoppers interact in-store and online by creating personalised and unique shopping experiences. By accessing critical data, our clients can visualise and better understand their customers, from their demographics and behaviour to product preferences.
Coniq’s industry expertise and innovative technology has generated over £1 billion in annual sales for its customers, targeting more than 20 million shoppers from 1,800 brands in 25 different countries. On average, Coniq clients experience an ATV uplift in the range of 5%-30%. Consequently, hundreds of leading shopping centres and retailers trust Coniq to optimise their sales and marketing strategy, whilst nurturing long-lasting relationships with their customers and retail tenants.