Find out more about omnichannel, methods of integrating your sales channels and the advantages for your online business.
If an online store was optional for companies until a few years ago, we now know that you are ignoring a very large market if you don’t have an online environment to sell your products and services, Brazil alone has around 100 million e-shoppers. But simply having an e-commerce business isn’t enough: with so many sales and communication channels available and the level of consumer adoption, one of the today’s big e-commerce trends is omnichannel.
The omnichannel strategy focuses on converging all a company’s sales and communication channels. In an omnichannel environment, customers can buy a company’s products online, at a physical store, via app or telephone, and so on. The purchasing experience becomes more fluid when there are no differences between online and offline channels. Customers see the same visual identity, the same products and the same prices and payment terms whichever channel they choose.
To better understand retail omnichannel, we need to understand the purchasing journey is not always linear when there are so many online channels available. In other words, a customer might discover a product on social media, research the item on Google, visit an online store, create and abandon a cart, visit a physical store to take a closer look and, after thinking about the purchase for a while, finally close the sale in the online store. In a survey by All iN and Social Miner, in partnership with Opinion Box, 60% of Brazilians said their purchases are hybrid, i.e., they alternate between physical and online stores in search of the best deal.
Omnichannel retail not only offers a wide range of sales and contact channels, it integrates them. This means consumers interact with the brand seamlessly, increasing the chance of building loyalty. For the strategy to be a success, you need to understand your target market very well. Some consumers still need to check a product’s appearance or try it on in person before buying, in which case the omnichannel strategy is a big ally.
The main difference between omnichannel and multichannel is channel integration. To be multichannel, an online store needs to provide online channels, like social media, and offline channels, such as events. This is an effective strategy given the various ways of reaching out to consumers and respecting each consumer’s individual buying preferences. This is one of multichannel’s characteristics: customers are not shown just one, standardized experience, or any connection between different experiences.
Cross channel can be viewed as an evolution of multichannel: two channels supplement one another so the consumer receives a better experience. In a cross channel strategy, online and physical stores are “interchangeable” when, for instance, a customer makes a purchase online but decides to pick it up from a physical store. Other interactions are possible and even commonplace: buying online and exchanging or returning at a physical store, or distributing a coupon on social media that is redeemable online.
B2W Digital, the company that runs the Submarino, Shoptime and Americanas.com online businesses, adopted an omnichannel strategy in 2019. To reduce product delivery times and costs (variables that might make a consumer give up on a purchase), marketplace platform sellers can offer a physical store address as a delivery option. Additionally, they can partner with various logistics companies and offer more shipping alternatives. This is critical for a cross-border e-commerce business facing even greater geographic and logistical difficulties.
Mixing different channels can be a good option for payments. When a company uses WhatsApp as a communication channel, WhatsApp Pay could be the perfect option for concluding a sale without switching environment. But the best option is not always that obvious! In a physical store, a customer might choose to pay for their purchase using Pix or a digital wallet, rather than physical options such as cash or a credit or debit card.
A payment link or QR code can be generated and distributed by chat, email or SMS for both online and in-person purchases. Another option is the boleto, which is widely used by Brazilian without bank accounts. Boletos are issued digitally and can be settled at places such as bank branches or lottery stores.
Bexs Pay can offer everything your company needs to offer a wide range of local payments and transfer your Brazilian sales to your country, in your local currency. Gain access to the Brazilian market using a customized, end-to-end solution. Find out more about the only PSP with a banking license in Brazil!