In business-to-business (B2B) sales, companies don’t limit themselves to a single channel to reach potential customers. They take advantage of various channels, from traditional sales and marketing to digital and online mediums, such as social media. This is a strategy known as “omnichannel selling.”
What is Omnichannel Selling?
Omnichannel selling is an approach to sales and marketing that focuses on providing customers with an integrated shopping experience, regardless of the channel they use. It includes using multiple channels across different devices and platforms, such as physical stores, online marketplaces, mobile apps, email campaigns, and more.
The goal is to create a seamless customer experience that allows customers to purchase products whenever, wherever, and however they choose.
Omnichannel selling goes beyond simply providing customers with access to multiple channels. It also requires companies to ensure that each channel works harmoniously so that information is shared seamlessly across all channels.
For example, if a customer visits a store and inquires about a product, it’s important that the store staff can access information from other channels, such as the company’s website or social media accounts. This allows them to provide accurate, up-to-date information about the product.
- Omnichannel Business Model – A business model that involves selling products through multiple channels (e.g., brick-and-mortar stores, online marketplaces) and providing a seamless shopping experience for the buyer.
- Omnichannel Commerce – A type of commerce that allows customers to purchase products from multiple sales channels, such as online marketplaces, stores, and mobile apps, providing a consistent experience throughout.
- Omni-Channel Sales – Sometimes, the hyphenated term “omni-channel sales” is used to refer to omnichannel selling.
- Omni-Channel Strategy – A strategy for marketing and selling products through multiple channels in order to provide customers with a seamless experience.
Omnichannel Selling vs. Multichannel Selling
Omnichannel selling and multichannel selling are similar business operations sometimes confused, but there is an important distinction between the two.
Multichannel selling simply involves using different channels to reach customers. It’s a passive approach that doesn’t require companies to coordinate information across all channels.
In contrast, omnichannel selling requires companies to actively manage multiple sales and marketing channels so they can provide customers with a consistent experience throughout the customer journey.
Omnichannel selling is an integrated approach to sales and marketing that can help businesses increase customer loyalty, boost sales, and capture a larger market share. The multichannel approach can also be effective, but it does not provide customers with the same level of seamless integration that omnichannel selling can.
By adopting an omnichannel strategy, businesses can take advantage of multiple channels and deliver a superior customer experience. This makes them more competitive in today’s digital marketplace.
Omnichannel Selling Strategy
The omnichannel strategy works as follows:
1. Map out the customer journey
First, businesses must map out the customer journey to identify touch points and potential areas of friction. This helps them determine which channels they need to focus on to provide a consistent, seamless shopping experience across all channels.
Customer journey mapping involves gathering information about customer preferences, such as which channels they prefer to use and when they are most likely to make a purchase.
2. Integrate data across all channels
Businesses need to integrate their data across all channels so that information is shared seamlessly and customers can access the same information regardless of which channel they use.
The easiest and most common way companies integrate data is through a unified customer profile. This allows customers to access the same information and purchase history across all channels.
3. Invest in the right technologies
The key to successful omnichannel selling is investing in the right technologies that enable businesses to integrate data, track customer behavior, and personalize their experiences across all channels.
CRM software, analytics tools, and marketing automation software are all key technologies for implementing effective omnichannel strategies.
4. Personalize the customer experience
Businesses should also personalize their sales engagement as much as possible by leveraging data collected from different channels. This allows them to create customized offers and promotions that are tailored to each customer’s needs and preferences.
Personalization can be done in a few different ways:
- Leveraging customers’ browsing and purchase history
- Providing tailored recommendations based on customers’ past interactions with the business
- Using AI-driven personalization platforms
- Creating a private email list for customers
Businesses can also connect with customers after they’ve made a purchase. This helps them build relationships with them, encourage repeat purchases, and boost customer loyalty.
5. Develop a strong content strategy
Content is one of the most important elements of any successful omnichannel selling strategy. It’s essential that businesses create quality content that engages customers across all channels and encourages them to make a purchase.
Content should be tailored to the customer’s needs and interests and optimized for different channels, such as social media, email, search engines, etc.
Businesses should also use content marketing to educate customers about their products or services and build relationships with them over time. This helps create strong brand loyalty that can drive more sales.
6. Educate and train the sales team
Training is a critical component of any successful omnichannel selling strategy. Businesses need to make sure their sales team is aware of the latest trends, technologies, and best practices for delivering a seamless customer experience across all channels.
They should also be trained on how to use the technology needed to manage and track data and optimize the customer journey.
A few ways to train employees on omnichannel sales strategies:
- Educate them on company sales structure using a sales playbook
- Provide webinars or workshops
- Provide resources, such as ebooks and blogs
By educating their sales team, businesses can ensure that their customers receive a consistent experience across all channels.
7. Measure and optimize
Finally, businesses should measure and optimize their omnichannel retail strategy to ensure they provide a seamless experience across all channels. This can be done by tracking sales KPIs, customer reviews, feedback, and engagement across all channels.
Companies can then use this data to identify areas of improvement and make necessary changes.
Benefits of an Omnichannel Approach to Sales
Of course, an integrated approach to the sales process has a number of benefits for businesses.
When companies offer their products or services through multiple channels, they can maximize their reach and appeal to a wider range of customers. By increasing the number of touchpoints, businesses can capture more leads and drive more sales.
Since nearly 50% of today’s consumers use more than four touchpoints, an omnichannel approach can help businesses tap into their customer base more effectively.
Better Customer Experience
When customers can find more of what they want more quickly and easily, everyone wins. An omnichannel approach to sales can provide customers with more convenient, integrated, and personalized experiences by communicating with them directly, taking a consultative approach, and offering relevant product recommendations.
Revenue generation is a key benefit of an omnichannel approach to sales. By offering customers a seamless experience across multiple channels, companies can drive repeat purchases and increase their customer lifetime value (CLV) by 30%.
Creating Successful Omnichannel Selling Experiences
In sales operations, the omnichannel experience has become increasingly popular. By leveraging the right technologies and systems, businesses can create seamless and personal experiences for their customers across all channels, drive more sales, and generate greater revenue.
Personalization in Omnichannel Selling
The first and most important step in creating an effective omnichannel experience is personalization. Companies should take the time to understand their customers and build relationships with them, leveraging customer data
As we mentioned earlier, there are a few ways to do this. These include providing tailored recommendations based on customers’ past interactions with the business, using AI-driven personalization platforms, and creating a private email list for customers.
When implementing a personalized omnichannel approach, it’s important to meet customers on the platforms they are already using. This could include social media, email newsletters, or the company’s website. In many cases, it is a mix of all three.
Companies can also leverage omnichannel marketing platforms to measure and optimize their campaigns.
By creating personalized experiences for customers across channels, businesses can dramatically increase customer engagement and loyalty, driving more sales in the process.
Omnichannel integration involves providing a consistent customer experience—and customer journey—across all channels. This means that regardless of which channel customers use to interact with a business—whether it’s their website, mobile experiences, digital marketplaces, or a brick-and-mortar store—they should have the same user experience.
Fully integrating each individual channel and creating an omnichannel experience requires a robust technology stack, data integration, digital marketing strategies, and alignment of customer service processes.
Businesses should also consider how they can leverage their existing systems or develop new ones to ensure that customers have the same cross-channel experience.
Omnichannel Selling Platforms
Omnichannel selling platforms include tools that help businesses manage and optimize their sales operations across multiple channels. These platforms provide features such as inventory management, order fulfillment, product recommendations, marketing automation, customer data, and more.
In the case of larger organizations, it may be necessary to invest in a dedicated omnichannel platform like a customer relationship management (CRM) system. These systems can help businesses manage customer data, automate marketing campaigns, and personalize individual experiences across channels.
Data Collection Opportunities
Unless businesses collect data from each channel, they won’t be able to deliver personalized experiences. As a result, businesses should take advantage of the data collection opportunities that arise from using an omnichannel approach.
Analyzing this data can provide insights into customer behaviors and needs that businesses can then use to tailor their future marketing efforts.
By leveraging a comprehensive data collection and analysis strategy, businesses can gain valuable insights into how their customers are interacting with them across channels. This data can then be used to optimize marketing campaigns, increase sales conversions, and create loyal customers.
Software for Successful Omnichannel
For a sales team to successfully implement an omnichannel approach, they need the right software tools for every step of the buying journey.
- CRM Software: CRM software helps businesses manage customer data and automate marketing and sales processes.
- Marketing Automation: This type of software makes it easier to send targeted campaigns and track conversions across channels. It includes features such as email marketing, lead management, and analytics.
- Inventory Management: Businesses need inventory management tools to keep track of their products and supplies so they don’t miss any sales opportunities.
- Order Management: This software helps businesses manage orders and shipments, ensuring orders are fulfilled quickly and accurately.
- Customer Service Automation: Social commerce platforms, chatbots, and helpdesk tools make it easier for businesses to respond quickly and efficiently to customers.
- CPQ: Configure, price, quote (CPQ) software is helpful for businesses that need to quickly create accurate quotes for customers. If businesses have complex pricing models, then CPQ software can help streamline the process.
Each of these tools can help businesses streamline operations, reduce costs, increase efficiency, and improve customer service.
People Also Ask
What is an example of omnichannel?
A perfect example of an omnichannel retail strategy is Amazon. Their shopping app, website, and brick-and-mortar stores all sync together seamlessly to give customers a unified shopping experience.
In the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) space, Salesforce is a great example of an omnichannel platform. It integrates multiple channels into one connected platform for businesses to analyze customer data, automate marketing campaigns, and deliver personalized experiences across channels.
What are omnichannel brands?
Omnichannel brands are those that offer customers a seamless experience across channels, either online or offline.
Businesses use omnichannel strategies to provide consistent customer experiences by leveraging data from each channel and creating personalized communications tailored to each customer’s needs and interests. This creates a more unified customer journey that increases sales and customer loyalty.
Examples of omnichannel brands include:
Why is omnichannel becoming the preferred approach for selling?
98% of consumers switch between devices in the same day, meaning that businesses need to be able to reach and engage customers across multiple channels.
Omnichannel selling is the most effective way for businesses to do this, as it gives them an integrated view of customer interactions and provides a single source of truth when analyzing customer data.
By delivering tailored experiences that are consistent across channels, omnichannel selling helps businesses deliver the right message to their target customers at the right time.