Customers now have a variety of alternatives for how to purchase online as the ecommerce environment continues to develop, including going straight to an online retailer’s website, browsing items spotted on tiktok or Instagram, or looking for a particular item on large marketplaces like Amazon or Walmart.
There is one purchasing habit that all online buyers share: rather of taking the time to look for your brand, they frequently run into direct-to-consumer (DTC) firms who can cater to their needs on the channels they currently use.
Because of this, developing a multi-channel ecommerce strategy is essential for DTC firms to maintain long-term success.
In this post, we’ll look more closely at multi-channel ecommerce, including what it is, why it’s crucial in the current e-commerce environment, and how to run a multi-channel business to provide outstanding customer service. Let’s get going.
What is multi-channel online shopping?
The concept of leveraging many channels to contact consumers and sell more goods in order to reduce your dependency on a single online shop is known as multi-channel e-commerce.
The multi-channel approach entails connecting several sales channels and platforms to your internet business as a hub. For greater exposure and a broader audience, the items you sell and keep in stock are also offered in different sales channels.
It is more easy for clients to buy things via the channel of their choosing when a variety of sales channels are available (and introducing your product to new customers who otherwise would not be familiar).
These sales channels often combine online marketplace listings, social media platforms, merchant websites, physical storefronts, and other channels for online buying.
Why there is a rise in multi-channel ecommerce
You can boost revenue, raise brand recognition, and improve the consumer experience by developing a multi-channel presence because to its usefulness and simplicity.
However, controlling several sales channels may be quite difficult and complicated. However, multi-channel ecommerce’s continuous success demonstrates that the advantages much exceed the difficulties (plus, we’ll provide some advice on how to enhance multi-channel ecommerce management).
Multi-channel ecommerce sales are expected to increase by 18.8% in 2021 to reach $417.18 billion, according to emarketer. It could be time to expand if you’re presently just selling on your website (or another platform like Amazon) in order to enhance awareness and boost sales.
The following are some of the main causes for the continued growth of multi-channel ecommerce:
Increases brand awareness
You may increase the exposure of your brand by expanding your brand’s presence across a variety of channels and exposing more people to your business and its goods.
Since we know via attribution and monitoring, it may take many encounters with your brand before a consumer makes a purchase, it’s also another point of exposure. They will grow more used to you and may be more willing to make the buy if they see you more often and in different locations.
Increased brand awareness may organically translate to more prospective consumers. Using social media to connect with your consumers more and encourage them to share your company’s content with their network, which also allows social proof, is a perfect example of brand visibility in action.
Helps fulfil client expectations
Consumers now need companies to provide flexibility in terms of when and where they may make purchases.
By meeting your consumers where they are and giving them an easy method to purchase what they want, when and when they want it, having a multi-channel presence enables you to achieve this expectation.
Boosts the possibility for sales
Campaigns employing a single channel have a purchase rate that is 287% lower than DTC brands that utilise three or more sales channels.
To simplify the buyer’s journey, give online shoppers the option to purchase your products directly from the channel they’re currently using. This eliminates the hassle of having to switch to your online store to complete the transaction (or having to visit a physical store or create a new account to purchase on a new website).
Overall, direct shopping across various channels reduces the possibility of cart abandonment since buyers can easily finish their purchases in only a few clicks.
Management of returns
The process of managing returns can be difficult because it entails many different tasks, including restocking the returned goods or discarding them if they are damaged, sending replacements or refunds (along with the cost of a second shipment), documenting the reasons for the returns (and taking appropriate action if there is a product error, product page optimization, etc.), and much more.
Of course, platform and merchant criteria for returns might differ. Having a system that records and handles all returns from a single location will help you save time and money while completing the multi-channel e-commerce process.
The best options for handling ecommerce refunds are listed below:
- Returnly – By giving your consumers the proper product before they return the wrong one, Returnly improves the customer experience. Returnly gives your clients the ability to arrange simple, rapid returns and connects with multi-channel shipments platform to preserve the accuracy of your data.
- Happy Returns – Happy Returns offers a smooth channel experience by multi channel shipping solution enabling in-person returns for online items. Happy Returns connects with shipment provider to handle multi-channel returns and exchanges from a single window and make the returns process simpler for your consumers.
What advantages does multi-channel e-commerce offer?
By offering your items in several online locations, you may better the shopping experience, increase sales potential, and raise brand awareness while reaching your consumers where they are.
Is multi-channel online shopping more successful?
When compared to single-channel e-commerce, multi-channel e-commerce is more lucrative since it enables you to reach more people and increase sales by improving the online shopper experience (i.e., they can buy from you via their choice of storefront). By promoting items on platforms that already have a significant number of active and engaged consumers, it also improves brand exposure. More sales may nevertheless cover greater expenditures even while profit margins vary per channel.