Studies show that the more channels your customers engage with, the more money they are likely to spend on your brand. Naturally, the wise brand strives to meet the customer with a suiting channel mix. However, one of the significant obstacles to become genuinely omnichannel and cash-in on the customer value lies within the organisation – not with the customer. This article takes measures of the blurring lines between the online and the physical shop and how to increase the value of your customers by spurring them to shop across channels, exemplified by the Agillic customer SPORTMASTER. 

Today, most retailers have an e-commerce set-up along with their physical shops. Unfortunately, there is a risk that e-commerce and the physical shop perceive each other as competitors and as a result, operate as if they were disconnected. Potentially, this can result in losing out on up to 45 % of the total value per customer. E-Commerce and physical shops need to be working together instead of competing, so what can be causing the disconnect?

Stuck in a pre-e-commerce mindset?

The obstacles to realising the full potential of the omnichannel customer are partly fear of cannibalism, as the online sale is seen as preying on a sale that previously took place in the physical shop only. SPORTMASTER identified a certain reluctance to the e-commerce activities from the staff in the physical stores, where the synergy between the channels wasn’t realised. To prevent a negative impact, they addressed it actively and launched an internal dialogue to understand the issue.

They discovered that the incitement model originating in the pre-e-commerce era, where a store manager was measured by his or her contribution to the daily revenue, being a key metric for the shops, just didn’t match the new business model. When you introduce the customer-centric omnichannel approach, this mindset is outdated and counterproductive of the overall goal.

Get the staff onboard

To end the disconnect between e-commerce and physical stores SPORTMASTER changed their incitement structure and introduced a regional division of customers regulating how the online sale was attributed to the stores. They also made the correlation between the increased customer value and omnichannel clear to the entire organisation, so that everybody could work as a customer-focused team. And with the customer club as a focal point and a valuable tool to communicate, sales associates became essential agents in motivating customers to sign up.  

Merging the online and the physical shopping experience

SPORTMASTER’s business model successfully combines e-commerce and physical shops. And it is not just that it offers the opportunity to shop online and offline; SPORTMASTER has experienced increased value-add when the customers buy online and offline combined. Stimulating the customers to shop across channels has, therefore, become a significant part of the strategy and the tactics.

Complete the sale with endless ailes

SPORTMASTER also offers the option for customers to shop in their webshop while in the physical shop. For instance, if an item isn’t available at the store, the customer can check if the item is available in a nearby shop, have it transferred from one shop to another for pick up or buy it and have it delivered. This concept is known as endless aisles and completes the sales by enabling the customer to switch channel frictionless.

Tactics to increase the share of omnichannel customers

  • The customer club is a prerequisite for successfully leveraging the value of the omnichannel customer, and the staff should actively encourage customers to sign up
  • Regardless whether the customer’s first purchase is online or offline, the next purchase must be stimulated 
  • Spur channel crossover: 
    • Online vouchers to retail customers
    • Event invitations to online customers
  • Personalise win-back offers when no purchase has been made for a specific period

Let's talk more omnichannel

If you would like to know more about proven tactics to increase the omnichannel customer value and how to communicate relevant and personalised with your customers such as SPORTMASTER is doing based on the Agillic platform, feel free to contact me at rh@agillic.com and +45 53 886 555.


References:
  1. Harvard Business Review, A study of 46.000 Shoppers Shows That Omnichannel Retailing Works, January 03, 2017