How does multichannel retailing benefit both merchants and customers?

July 2017

Perhaps you sell online through an ecommerce website or marketplace, have a physical retail outlet or showcase at exhibitions, events and festivals, the great news is, multichannel retailing has advantages for both merchants and customers....

Below we have outlined a few of the benefits…

Advantages for the merchant

Boost sales

When you offer your products through more sales avenues, you’re able to increase your visibility and brand, as well as tap into more areas of the market and gain more new customers, and therefore make more sales. Also the different sales channels can offer different opportunities for upselling; from an impulse purchase to an everyday essential at a physical till point in your shop, to displaying personalised recommendations in your ecommerce site based on items that other customers bought with a similar purchase.

Improve customer loyalty

Nowadays, customers expect to be able to make purchases on the go and while engaged in other activities. Multichannel retailing allows you to offer a more seamless, integrated experience across a range of sales channels, as well as provide more accessible customer support in person, through phone, email, live chat or social media. In turn, you’ll find you’re rewarded with loyal customers who purchase more, better reviews, swifter resolutions and customers who perceive you as forward-thinking, offering a service catered to them that not everyone else does. Using customer segmentation and data insights gained through the various sales channels, means you can also make sure only relevant information and offers are communicated to your audience.

Gather insightful data

If you take sales online, instore and over the phone, multichannel retailing allows you to collect a range of data on your customers to help you build a profile of your audience. Things like their demographic, purchasing history, interests, as well as the time, location and device they shop from, are crucial insights that can help inform your marketing campaigns and sales strategy, and boost your ROI.

Benefits for the consumer

Ease and convenience

With people leading more hectic lives, the biggest benefit of multichannel retailing to customers is convenience. Those who need something urgently can order online and collect in store or at another affiliated location nearby, while others who might work awkward hours can arrange for delivery at a time that suits. Multichannel retailing could also mean expanding your presence into online marketplaces to make life easier for customers who already have an account, instead of having to set up a brand new one. In fact, a study by PwC on consumer habits found that 58% of shoppers already use Amazon.

Manage preferences

With multichannel retailing, customers are able to pick and choose how they shop. Different formats of selling fulfil different functions, with some customers preferring to sit down and browse online in front of the TV, whilst being reassured that they can order something urgent at the click of a button on their morning commute or pick up from your shop at lunchtime. Hand in hand with this, accessing your shop through different media means they’re also able to manage what information they give and select how they’d like to be marketed to so that they get a service tailored to their needs.

Customers feel rewarded

Using the data you receive on your customers, you can give them more of what they want so that they feel looked after and rewarded. According to PwC, 59% of customers said they want real-time offers designed just for them. You can target flash sales, promotions and voucher codes to be seen by certain groups when you utilise the insights and technology behind multi-channel retailing.

Multichannel retailing the smart way

At ShopTill-e, giving your customers multiple ways to shop doesn’t mean having to manage several points of sale software.

We make things easy, with our fully integrated cloud ePOS and ecommerce platform, it syncs up seamlessly, keeping all your products and inventory data constantly updated, so whether you sell online or sell through your own shop or marketplace like Amazon and eBay, ShopTill-e helps you to “spend less time managing and more time selling”.

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