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GUEST COMMENT Seamless omnichannel ecommerce: the key to boosting sales

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If you are a fan of the traditional high street shopping experience, you will be encouraged to see our towns and cities back to some sort of normality in recent months. Yet despite many people relishing the return of in-person retail following enforced lockdowns across the globe, it is likely that the pandemic will have a long-term impact on our shopping habits.

The adoption of online shopping has shifted dramatically in the past 18 months. A recentOfcom study found that in 2020, with much of the world confined to their homes for extended periods of time, online shopping grew by 48% to £113bn. The message to retailers is clear: the need to build a seamless omnichannel ecommerce experience to capture a share of these growing sales has never been so important. 


Seamless brand experience

Omnichannel ecommerce refers to the use of various sales channels (physical and digital storefronts) to create a unified, seamless brand experience for consumers on any platform, at any time. When omnichannel ecommerce is done well, customers can move freely from one channel to the next, their interactions will feel congruent, and they’ll know they’re interacting with your brand the whole time. That improves their buying experience and forms relationships that build brand loyalty.

Most companies use multiple platforms and channels for sales, but that doesn’t make them omnichannel. Brands can be spread across websites, social media, and physical locations without connecting those experiences. If each of those channels feels disconnected and the interactions don’t build from or influence each other, that’s just multichannel, not omnichannel. It’s vital to make the leap to omnichannel and create a coherent journey from interaction to interaction. Otherwise, the experience you provide will seem disjointed and outdated compared to others who are mastering omnichannel marketing for ecommerce.

The rise of mobile commerce

With more and more brands digitally transforming, it is expected that mobile commerce will experience  one of the biggest retail sales growth in 2021, with a total growth of 12.2%, beating traditional ecommerce and in-store shopping According toForrester, mobile’s share of US online retail and travel commerce will increase from 36% in 2018 to 45% in 2024. The analyst firm believes that revenue per user will be the growth driver as consumers become increasingly comfortable buying directly on their smartphones. Mobile retail options are also increasing. According toeMarketer, new tech such as augmented reality, 5G, and one-touch systems like Apple Pay or Google Pay, will continue to drive growth in the future.

For brands to therefore understand how their customers like to shop, establish a strong brand position, and create a consistent experience across platforms, marketers need to prioritise the mobile experience. Make sure you get the basics right. All the different kinds of ecommerce product content you produce should support mobile shopping. For example, make sure your image and video sizes display well on smartphones and tablets. And if you produce 360º spin photography, make sure it’s optimised for mobile because this content type can increase conversion by as much as 47%.

Using the right technology solutions can help retailers address the ecommerce content issues described above. Unfortunately, sifting through the sheer number of tech options available can be an intimidating task in its own right. You don’t have unlimited time to invest in carefully exploring all of your options. Finding the right solution to keep your content organised, accessible, and shareable can be the key to your ecommerce business surviving…and thriving.

A vital step is integrating your product information management (PIM) and digital asset management (DAM) solutions. When you’re selling one product in three (or more) channels, you want to make sure that all the product information is consistent and has the right type of content. Bringing your DAM and PIM platforms together can help streamline this vital part of your user experience across platforms. From discovery and research to purchase and delivery, customers need to feel like they’re interacting with the same brand and get the same product information at every step.

Establish a strong brand position

With a strong brand position as a foundation to guide you, it’ll be easier to create an effective omnichannel ecommerce experience for your customers. This is more than just how your logo looks on all channels – it’s the alignment of your brand’s vision, product, and identity.

With that in place, you can start to prioritise your channels and identify parts of the customer journey that make your brand what it is. Maybe it’s essential to sell products on social media or perhaps it’s the product descriptions on your website that really communicate who you are. Chances are your brand position will lead to multiple omnichannel priorities, and a healthy revenue pipeline.


Nate Holmes, Product Marketing Manager,Widen

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