How can the in-store and online experience work together to deliver the best customer journey?
Ecommerce dominates the discussion about shopping and consumer trends today. However, it’s not the only way that consumers like to buy. Whereas the digital world provides convenience, choice, cost reduction and the opportunity to research everything beforehand, it just can’t deliver on the physical and emotional experience of in-store shopping. The answer then, it seems, is to integrate the two.
Make it easy for people to Google you
It’s important to acknowledge the crossover that now exists between online and in-store. Consumers will search online while in the store, for example, whether you want that or not. Enabling this can be good for business – for example setting up free guest WiFi for shoppers and attaching QR codes next to the top products so the digital and real world experiences tie up.
Online customer service that is as fast as in-store
In-store staff provide an instant response to customer questions and queries but it’s often not the same for those shopping online. Retailers looking to integrate these two platforms to create the best customer journey can employ technology such as live chat (and soon chat bots) to ensure that asking a question online is as swift and easy as talking to staff in-store.
Many retailers have begun investing in geotargeting, which enables them to reach out to shoppers via their mobile devices as they move through the store. This can be generally or specifically targeted, right down to the display that the customer is currently standing in front of. Personalised offers can be delivered directly to customers at the point at which they are the most relevant, enhancing the customer journey and improving the chances of a sale.
Free in-store pick up
When customer buy online, offering free in-store pick up is a great way to drive customers to a physical store and offers another upselling opportunity.
Digital kit in-store
Customers will often go online during or after a store visit, whether that’s to find an item at a cheaper price or to buy it elsewhere if it wasn’t available in the store. Retailers can control this part of the customer journey by making digital kit, such as devices and digital kiosks, available in-store where these transactions can be completed without customers leaving. When the ecommerce experience is brought in store like this it makes it much less likely that the customer will be lost to a competitor.
Make use of consumer generated content in-store
Engaging with consumers is the key to successfully integrating online and in-store – and user generated content is a very easy way to do this. Large screens in-store that display content generated by those currently in the store (e.g. selfies or texts or tweets) can provide an additional level of engagement that contributes to brand loyalty. This can also help to promote content sharing and drive new consumers and followers to the social media profile of the brand.
Mobile payments in-store
One of the major plus points for digital shopping is that checkout takes place in one click and there are no queues. To a certain extent this can be replicated in-store with mobile payment options that help reduce queues and mean customers can pay quickly.
Innovation has the power to change every industry – at RG Group we make it our business to be on top of the latest evolutions across all relevant sectors. Get in touch with our team today to find out more.