Customers who shop online and in person spend an average of 4% more each trip to the store and 10% more online than shoppers visiting a single channel, according to the Harvard business review. Coordinating online and offline marketing requires following omnichannel best practices, including considering your budget and resources, ensuring consistency of consumer data and providing a seamless solution, experience to customers.
Whether your business is reaching a customer through in-store signage, social media, or face-to-face interactions, the experience you deliver should be positive, consistent, and meaningful. As you plan to run a business that is both physical and digital, read on to learn how to develop a unique and coordinated promotional strategy.
Develop a cross-channel strategy
Documenting your cross-channel strategy helps define what offline and online success looks like, describes the rationale behind your omnichannel marketing approach, and reduces issues that may arise (such as duplication of effort or spending time on bad ones. canals).
Start by creating a one-page plan that describes your existing goals, target personalitiesand marketing initiatives – these will need to be developed to accommodate online activities. Here’s what the plan should include in more detail:
Describe three to five marketing goals for your business, such as raising awareness or increasing engagement with customers. Then, match each goal with three to five key performance indicators (KPIs) that explain how it will be measured online and offline. For example, awareness as a marketing goal can be controlled by the number of page views on your website and the number of store visits from neighborhood pedestrian traffic.
Beyond what is known about your existing customers (such as their job, age, income, education, etc.), add online behaviors to your profiles of each persona. This will inform your approach to marketing through digital channels. These can include their preferred online communication methods, the social networks they are active on, the topics they most often search online, the blogs and digital publications they read, or other places where they like to shop online.
Avoid over-spreading your promotional efforts by focusing on two to three marketing channels that will allow you to reach your target audience both online and offline. List the channels you’ll be testing to see if your customers are responding to your offers and messages, which should then indicate where you’ll invest more. Whether it’s direct mail, Instagram, or both, it’s important to achieve your goals and deliver value to your target personalities with these channels.
Use online channels to draw attention to in-store events and experiences
With an understanding of your marketing priorities, it’s time to execute your cross-channel strategy using the distinct qualities of online and in-store retail.
Beyond promoting your products, use online channels like email and social media to draw attention to in-store events and experiences. While driving shopping is a practical goal, the best way to have a memorable interaction with customers is to get them to visit your store.
Since you are able to have more control over the in-person experience, organize in-store events related to your product offerings and consistently promote them online. This matters because 49% of consumers surveyed said they visit stores more often due to the introduction of dining and entertainment options.
For example, Lululemon, the clothing brand specializing in yoga and running wear, regularly hosts free yoga and workout classes, as well as running clubs in their stores. Many of their stores have their own e-mail newsletters and Facebook Pages to alert their regional customers of upcoming events, which helps generate constant in-store traffic.
Additionally, use social media, articles or videos to highlight service experiences that deliver value to customers, relate to your products, and are only available in store.
For example, TuxMat is a company that produces custom car mats designed to match the specific dimensions of any make or model of vehicle. When customers make a purchase in their showroom, their team will also install the custom car mats for them at no additional cost, which will simplify the in-store visitor experience. The company promotes its custom installation options on Instagram and Facebook, highlighting one of the main benefits of visiting his retail store.
Synchronize your online and in-store communication efforts
To grow your business, all of your online communication efforts must support your in-store business and vice versa. The advantage of your online presence is the ability to communicate with your customers over the long term via email, a loyalty program or social media.
Ongoing communication with customers is important because 81% of US small and medium retailers Respondents found email marketing to be their primary source of customer acquisition and retention.
Building a mailing list, following on social media, or creating an online loyalty program can help your business:
- Promote exclusive in-store offers and sales.
- Promote articles and videos created by your business that provide relevant advice or showcase your products.
- Alert your customers to in-store services and seasonal events.
At the same time, your ability to interact with customers face to face in-store is an opportunity to expand your online customer contact list and provide your business with a channel to consistently encourage more store visits.
To register customers in a non-intrusive way in-store:
- Ask for their emails at checkout to support your email marketing.
- Alert them to the benefits of your loyalty program.
- Draw attention to current offers shared on your social media accounts.
The goal is to be targeted when chatting with customers to generate sales, but make sure you can connect with them again by supporting your online efforts.
Measuring omnichannel marketing
To understand whether your organization’s efforts across all channels are successful, identify a more balanced mix of KPIs that highlight online and in-store success.
While your business and sales goals remain the same, the KPIs associated with each goal should reflect customer activity online and in-store. Depending on where you are active, here is a range of KPIs to consider:
- Website pageviews (online)
- Website users (online)
- Social media impressions (online)
- Video views (online)
- Retail visitors (in-store)
- Pages per session (online)
- Average duration of sessions (online)
- Average length of stay (in store)
- Social media interactions (online)
- Email registration (both)
- Coupon redemption rate and gift cards (Both)
- Monthly income (both)
- Income growth (both)
- Sales per square foot (in store)
- Conversion rate (online)
- Customer acquisition costs (both)
- Gross margin (both)
- Cost of goods sold (both)
- Lifetime customer value (both)
- Customer retention rate (both)
- Promoter’s Net Score (both)
- Repeat buy rate (both)
Since there is no single key performance indicator, it’s important to choose metrics that match your business performance goals. Determine which measurement tools are the most effective at tracking and reporting accurately on the metrics you have identified.
KPIs relating to your website (such as average session length or page views) can be calculated with measurement tools like Google Analytics, Kissmetrics or MixPanel.
For KPIs associated with in-store interactions (like the number of people visiting your stores or sales per square foot), use tools like Square Analytics or Springboard Retail.
Creating target KPIs for your marketing goals will help you understand which online and offline tactics work and which tactics need to be optimized (or abandoned together). By keeping the pulse of performance metrics, you can optimize and reinvest in initiatives that generate the most revenue for your business.