2riseThe rapidly evolving Internet and mobile technologies have changed customer expectations. Nowadays, customers have little time, are multitasking, and want their needs to be satisfied immediately. For trade this development means that the competition is more intense, more and more channels have to be served - and all that with steadily growing customer expectations and increasing complexity. Not to mention that in general consumers are taking over the control and decide through which channel they wish to be addressed.

For retailers the keyword is omnichannel. Since it is critical to respond to demands in real time, attention should be paid to the following when handling the omnichannel shoppers:
  • Personalization: Customers know that dealers have a lot of information about them and expect that they are able to provide them with the "right" offers. Thus, traders should take into account the current situation and needs of each client when providing their marketing messages.
  • Creation of a unified view of the customer: An integrated database is the most important component for a seamless customer experience. By combining multiple data sources in one place, retailers can get a panoramic view of their customers, understand their needs even better and communicate more effectively.
  • Identification of useful data: Not all customer data is relevant for marketing purposes per se. Retailers should therefore decide what data they can use meaningfully, split them up and develop rules to provide customers in a timely manner with relevant offers and messages.
  • Creating consistent messages: Different company departments need to work together, instead of acting separately, to ensure that the messages are consistent and the content is useful, relevant and appreciated.
  • Real-time access to data for each point of contact with the customer: In addition to the use of customer information for marketing campaigns, such information should be available for all staff with client contact in real time. Thus, for example, an employee at the point of sale can always keep an eye on customer profitability and current information on transactions to immediately make cross-sell or up-sell offers, being automatically more effective in interactions.
  • Meaningful insights: Relevance is the key to successful customer relationships. Retailers need a deep understanding of the customer and a well-defined contact strategy across all channels. In order to be able to make relevant offers, it is important to listen to the customer and make good use of the provided data.
  • Take your time: Real-time programs cannot be created overnight. Retailers need to be prepared that it takes a long time to align the right rules and data together to achieve the goal of "real-time communication."

Quite obviously, retailers today are facing a new category of consumers, especially since there is real-time marketing. Therefore, it is important that vendors understand this development as an opportunity to interact with the omnichannel customers over an even wider range of channels.

By Daniela La Marca