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5 Ways to Innovate Your Omnichannel Shopping Experience.

While some people are still debating the merits of e-commerce versus traditional brick-and-mortar retail, the clever entrepreneur knows the potential…

5 Ways to Innovate Your Omnichannel Shopping Experience

27th December 2023

While some people are still debating the merits of e-commerce versus traditional brick-and-mortar retail, the clever entrepreneur knows the potential that lies in both—and will aspire to reap the benefits of both models through an omnichannel approach. The omnichannel route is perhaps the best bet for small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and startups that deal in retail and want to enhance the convenience, availability, and overall relevance of their shopping experiences. 

But going omnichannel comes with its own fair share of obstacles, and one of them is figuring out how to craft a shopping experience that stays cohesive throughout the different channels. Customers should enjoy visiting both the brick-and-mortar shop and e-commerce site, and the brand’s signature should still be perceivable whether purchases are done online or in-store. Omnichannel retail works best when it’s done both efficiently and creatively, and if you want to go omnichannel soon or make your current omnichannel approach more effective, you should be prepared to make more than a half-hearted effort.

In that vein, here are five ways to innovate your omnichannel shopping experience and get the most out of your transition:

1) Create a Seamless Shopping Experience Both In-Store and Online

A seamless shopping experience between your physical and digital storefronts will establish a strong foundation for a holistic omnichannel strategy. Make it your goal to allow customers to move fluidly between different touchpoints, as this flexibility and convenience are what will increase the likelihood of conversions.

Consider implementing a click-and-collect system, for example, which will enable your customers to browse through your wares online and pick up their orders at your store. This strategy will bridge the gap between customers’ online and in-store purchasing journeys, offering convenience for those who want to shop online but also want a quicker pick-up option.

2) Upgrade your POS System and Online Payment Gateway

Modern consumers demand a smoother and more secure checkout process, whether they’re buying online or in person. To that end, you’ll want to upgrade your in-store POS (Point of Sale) as well as your e-commerce website’s online payment gateway.

Upgrading both your POS system and online payment gateway will decrease the chances of your customers feeling frustrated or unattended to during checkout. Moreover, making the switch to better payment software and hardware will allow you to improve your inventory management, order fulfillment, and customer data across all channels. The enhanced efficiency and security will contribute to an overall positive perception of the brand and encourage your customers’ trust in your omnichannel shopping experience.

There are plenty of POS and payment gateway solutions you can implement in your omnichannel business to improve your checkout on the whole. The Philippines’ Maya Business, for example, has the Maya Terminal, which is a PCI-DSS-compliant POS device that accepts various forms of cashless payments, from card payments to e-wallet and QR code payments. It’s also designed to be portable, allowing your customers to make payments from anywhere in your store. This makes it a POS Philippines business owners can easily integrate into their operations.

Maya Business also offers several online payment gateway plugins that enable your e-commerce website to accept digital payments with ease. Choose from its current selection of plugins for proprietary e-commerce platforms, like WooCommerce and Shopify.

3) Add Modern Elements to Your Physical Retail Store

There are also certain innovations that you can roll out in your physical store to improve customers’ in-store experience and seamlessly align with the digital aspects of your omnichannel strategy. Some examples of design elements and technologies that will truly modernize the look and shopping experience in your physical store are the following:

  • Digital signage.Dynamic and interactive digital signage will enhance the visual appeal of the store. It can be used for promotional campaigns, showcasing product information, and creating a more immersive brand experience overall. This will modernize the in-store environment and create an impression of a brand that’s truly omnichannel and not limited to physical retail.
  • The endless aisle. The endless aisle concept extends the product range available in-store by integrating digital displays or kiosks into the space. This allows customers to explore and purchase items beyond the physical inventory, providing them with more choices and reducing the likelihood of out-of-stock disappointments.
  • Self-checkout kiosks. Self-checkout kiosks promise customers a faster and more independent checkout process and allow them to imagine a shopping experience unconstrained by physical shopping lanes and cashiers. This not only reduces waiting times, but also caters to the preferences of consumers who appreciate a self-service option.
  • Augmented reality (AR).You can also utilize AR technology to improve in-store navigation. Try using an AR app that guides customers to specific products within your shop to enhance their convenience and reduce time spent searching for items.

4) Implement Real-Time Inventory Management Strategies

Maintaining an accurate and up-to-date inventory ensures that you have a clear and instant understanding of your stock levels across all channels. If you’re able to ensure that your products are consistently available both online and offline, you can prevent stockouts as well as reduce the risk of customer disappointment and dissatisfaction.

Real-time management strategies will also allow you to optimize your fulfillment process, leading to timely and accurate delivery of orders placed through various channels. Overall, these will contribute to a more streamlined and reliable omnichannel shopping experience for customers, boosting satisfaction and loyalty.

5) Invest in a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) System

Lastly, to truly excel in managing an omnichannel business, invest and learn how to operate a CRM solution that can handle hybrid operations. This technology will empower you to build meaningful and lasting relationships with your customers by centralizing and analyzing customer data from multiple online and offline channels.

The insights derived from a CRM system will help you create more personalized interactions and targeted marketing campaigns, as well as get a deeper understanding of your customers’ evolving preferences. When selecting a new CRM system, choose one that aligns with your business’s needs and integrates seamlessly with the other components of your business operations, like your POS and payment gateway.

It may take some time to really get the hang of omnichannel retail, especially since you’ll be managing two different storefronts. But your effort to innovate and do things differently will pay off and yield you the benefits from both brick-and-mortar store and e-commerce sales. Make the improvements listed above, and your shift to omnichannel operations will be a profitable one.

Categories: Advice, Articles

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