Today’s retail landscape has changed drastically over the last 5 years. Even more recently, the last two years have seen consumer adoption of digital channels increase tenfold by all age groups which has prompted a shift of corporate outlook on the necessity of technology.
As life continues to normalize, shopping attitudes persistently evolve as consumers slowly revert back to in-store environments.
According to a study by the Harvard Business Review, 73% of shoppers use more than one channel during their shopping journey. In addition, these shoppers spend 9% more in comparison to single channel shoppers.
So, what does this mean for today’s retailers? There’s a new consumer expectation: a streamlined experience that combines both digital and physical channels into a high-revenue omnichannel journey.
3 Requirements of a Strong Omnichannel Experience
Let’s talk about what makes a strong omnichannel experience:
- Consistency. In today’s world, it is now a requirement that all interactions with a brand, despite the channel, remain consistent. Anything less can be disruptive or disorientating to the shopper experience.
- Personalization. Due to the data commonly shared by consumers, audiences have become accustomed to uniquely engaging experiences. Digital messaging especially should be dynamic and adjust accordingly with the needs and interests of your shopper.
- Convenience. The consumer experience must be optimized in a way that creates ease of purchase across channels. The buyer’s journey must be intuitive and progress in a natural way. Remove friction from the experience wherever possible.
When all three of these work in tandem to create an optimal omni-channel buyer’s journey, you can expect to increase overall sales velocity. Companies with the strongest omnichannel experiences retain 89% of their customers on average, compared to 33% retention for companies with weak omnichannel customer experience, according to Aberdeen.
In order to further spur growth and consumer loyalty, brands must strategize their retail marketing on an even larger scale. This is where ‘phygital’ marketing strategies come into play. This approach helps mend the gap between digital and physical customer experiences.
Physical + Digital Strategies = Phygital Brand Experiences
Phygital goes beyond omni-channel experiences, prompting business to completely re-envision the customer journey.
Case in Point: Instead of isolated sales channels, phygital challenges brands to build an experience for consumers in which physical and digital work together. When successful, consumers are able to shop with ease from end-to-end, it increases spend and engagement.
In order to do this, brands must consider every interaction in order to bridge the gap between what customers want most in the channel and what they desire in a physical experience. Consumers want the ability to choose whether they should shop online or in-person at any point during their user journey.
Implementation Strategies: What’s Best for Your Business?
Utilizing a deep understanding of your unique audience needs, a quality phygital experience delivers excellent digital tools and in-person experiences prompting seamless interactions across channels. There are a multitude of retail marketing tactics utilized to create phygital experiences, such as VR/AR, QR codes, NFC tags, digital kiosks, AI bots and social media.
In order to understand the best approach, it’s important to consider these factors:
Research and analyze your consumer. What are their needs? What are their shopping expectations? How do they prefer to shop? In what ways do they want to interact with the product?
Next, dive a level deeper into their customer journey. What are the strengths within each channel? Where are there gaps? In what ways could you enhance the experience?
Once these foundational aspects are understood, you’re ready to strategize and implement phygital experiences to spark shopper engagement, drive sales and ultimately lead to increased brand loyalty. Cliffedge Marketing provides brand experience solutions that inspire action and create brand advocates.