Retailers find themselves in a real bind these days, with competition from other “bricks and mortar” chains, in addition to the increasingly intelligent and super social e-commerce, online shopping megabrands like Amazon, Alibaba and more. As defined by Wikipedia:
Multichannel retailing or Omnichannel retailing is the use of a variety of channels in a customer’s shopping experience including research before a purchase. Such channels include: retail stores, online stores, mobile stores, mobile app stores, telephone sales and any other method of transacting with a customer.
From Google, Research On Shopping Behaviors
Platforms like Shopify are empowering individual brands to sell directly to consumers through awesome branded e-commerce experiences, enabling those brands to earn huge margins which used to be shared with retailers, from small specialty stores to big box chains. Instead of selling a necklace for $50 wholesale which as specialty store would mark up to $100 or more, a brand that produced that necklace for $25 could make $75 v.s $25 per sale by “going direct” to consumer.
Dell was a pioneer in going direct, and now any brand can leverage Shopify’s platform to do way more than just set up a simple online store on their website. They can tap into extraordinary software that includes integration into social networks including Pinterest and Instagram, which are driving visual discovery and persuasion like wildfire.
Shopify’s Social Stats – Retailers Are Paying Attention
Still, large retailers have what individual brands usually do not – and that is customers. Millions of them. Customers, to retailers, are like subscribers to Communications Service Providers. Customers, like subscribers, are opportunities to sell in more and more, by building relationships – and deep data on buying behaviors, down to the very day and minute an individual usually shops for X.
Today, retailers are attempting to block the advent of social media shopping, the fastest growing influencer of what to buy and where to buy, by creating obstacles that restrict consumers to shop within their brand.
By accepting this trend and embracing true Omnichannel services, retailers could take advantage and harness customer information in order to identify their natural market and refine their product offerings and services to address their interests.
Omnichannel shoppers spend more and display brand loyalty because they are able to assess what brand offers them the best service. Retailers should stop trying to control what naturally takes course and instead try to capitalize on it.
Where does WebRTC fit into this?
WebRTC technology homogenizes the experience a consumer has on various devices which is at the core of a Omnichannel service. It provides the personalization that makes customers seek store, phone, or social media experiences for their service.
Despite the particular channel – in store or in home or in coffee shop – consumers still want to interact with a human being who can suggest products or offer assistance that is specific to them. The do not want to feel like they are being scammed. Consumers are willing to pay more for an item that fits their specific needs.
Omnichannel services that include the “human touch” provides the personalized information–and WebRTC provides the humanized communication.
Real life example of WebRTC enabling an awesome experience (www.toygenius.com)
Together, omnichannel strategies combined with human interactions via seamless browser-based experiences produces differentiation for retailers who are already blending their in-store and online offerings in order to compete with the online only challengers.
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I’d love to share with you how our Kandy platform offers the highest quality, most secure, most high definition and most cost efficient ways for retailers to embed WebRTC “omnichannel human solutions” into their mix.
Building omnichannel experiences for retailers on the Kandy PaaS