The purpose of e-commerce entrepreneurs is driving sales on their online stores. For this to happen, they must be able to reach out to the audience and potential customers and inform them about the product existence. Your overall aim is to sell to customers wherever they can be reached. Here, you can use a single channel or opt for multi-channel. For this article, the concentration will be on multi-channel e-commerce. So, what is it?
This aspect involves combining different distribution and marketing channels. Here, you mix different channels to drive sales to your customers. For instance, you can sell and market in your brick and mortar store, website, social media, email, and other digital platforms. The ultimate goal is to get the message to customers wherever they can be reached and offer them the freedom to choose. Here are the main features of a multichannel e-commerce platform:
Marketplace end-to-end integrations
These platforms allow you to integrate with various marketplaces. Here you can list your products in several digital markets and manage them at a go. Importantly, your platform should have an end-to-end integration such that you bring on board both buyers and suppliers. This way, you can monitor your data and enhance smooth inventory and price-setting decisions. You can set prices for each channel in a way that does not affect your revenue.
The multi-channel e-commerce aims at selling to customers in anyplace they purchase or buy products. It is not about bringing them onboard to purchase from a given point. In a simple language, each channel is a buying point. Whether the customer is on Facebook, Pinterest, website, or Amazon, they are not redirected to your page to complete their orders. Hence, the overall goal of this form of e-commerce is offering the customers freedom of choice.
Independent selling point customer experiences
Unlike in single channel, multichannel focuses on offering independent customer experience. Each channel acts as a separate market with different offers. The aim is to deliver the best value to the customer shopping through that channel. For instance, there is no harmonized offer for all channels. Also, the customer gets different experiences customized for the specific channel. Those shopping through Facebook and ones using Amazon and other digital marketplaces enjoy different customer services tailor-made to meet the expectations of that channel.
A good multichannel platform should enable you to analyze the behavior and traits of your customers. The channel should be capable of identifying the marketplace your customers originated. For instance, if a customer is using Facebook, they should view a message welcoming them to your online store and recognize that they are from that marketplace.
Also, analytical tools are essential in helping you to come up with a marketing strategy. When you understand the behavior and the traits of your customers, you can know the best way to reach out to them with your goods and services. Also, it becomes easier to design your marketing campaigns as you can determine the categories of customers to target.
In a word, multichannel e-commerce is a design seeking to market your product and services through targeting digital marketplaces where customers buy. It involves treating each market as an independent point of sale and offering the customer experience that tallies with it. Also, this form of e-commerce looks forward to giving the customers freedom of choice.
Unlike the single channel, the focus is not on unified customer experience. Rather, it is about taking the message to the potential customers and easing their buying decision. The major focus of this type of e-commerce is social media, digital market platform, physical and online stores.