Some people tend to gravitate towards one specific method of shopping, spending their time primarily on the web or in-store. The omnishopper is a relatively new type of shopper, one who is truly agnostic about how and where their purchase occurs. These shoppers are concerned with convenience, frictionless service, and an exceptional user experience on the web and mobile apps. Click-and-collect orders are just one of the ways that shoppers are proving their cross-channel chops, with all of the benefits of online ordering and local shopping rolled into one. How can marketers rise to the needs of this type of shopper? Pure digital plays simply don’t provide the sales boost, while marketers may still be scrambling to find the ideal strategy to attract and convert these omnishoppers for their brand.
About the Omnishopper
Omnishoppers may spend the majority of their time shopping online, but a convenient and friendly store will also attract their attention — and their dollars. Consumer packaged goods (CPG) and retailer marketers have more information at their disposal than ever before, allowing for effective targeting of this new breed. More than 70% of Millennials work a large portion of their time outside the office, which causes them to be tied directly to their smartphone as an extension of their office computer. These time-starved shoppers are looking for convenience above all else, and sometimes a local store is more appealing than online shopping, as it offers an immediate option that does not require pre-planning. Attracting these omnishoppers requires a deep understanding of their needs, their travel habits, and exceptional access to the data that will engage them. Research plays a strong role in tracking and serving these omnichannel shoppers, with more than 50% using digital methods to compare prices and nearly that many also comparing products.
Research Comes Before Strategy
Shoppers today want to have a strong understanding of a brand and what it stands for before they decide to invest their hard-earned dollars. Brand transparency helps shoppers see how their preferred brands support the environment as well as determine the nature of their ingredients. Marketers must reach these highly informed shoppers with the right information at the right time, delivered via the appropriate channel. Otherwise, the impact of the information is diluted and may not lead the shopper to purchase. Research shows that there are generational differences in shopping behavior. Millennials are more than willing to do a quick order online but prefer in-store shopping for a larger order according to Nielsen. At the same time, older shoppers are more willing (25% versus 15% for Millennials) to complete a large restock order online. Marketers may be surprised to see the high percentage of Boomers and older generations who are interested in home delivery — more than 83%, to be exact. This tiny detail can cause marketers to shift retail strategy in an attempt to reach shoppers at the critical moment of purchase.
Strategies to Attract and Convert Omnishoppers
There are many tactics that marketers can deploy to encourage shoppers to take action. For the omnishopper, there is no perceived difference between online and offline shopping. A recent Mastercard study revealed this surprising fact, as shoppers are always on the lookout for ways to improve their overall experience. Strategies that support this mentality include utilizing influencers, offering deep discounts, leveraging digital and storytelling, and the ability to be fully transparent and authentic in branding.
Influencer marketing is hotter than ever. No longer “the next big thing,” it’s shifted to a near-requirement for any CPG marketing plan. That’s because influencers provide thought leadership in a specific field and wield significant influence over their followers. What makes these individuals interesting to marketers is their ability to bring their audience along by inspiring loyalty and strong purchasing power. Studies show that Facebook influencers impact nearly 20% of shopping decisions, and marketers are gaining an average of 7 times the earned media coverage per dollar allotted to influencer marketing. Shoppers who follow influencers on Twitter are over 5 times more likely to make a purchase when they see promotional material from individuals they are following.
Offering Deep Discounts
It will come as no surprise that shoppers love a significant discount. When marketers are able to deliver the right type of discount in a timely fashion, omnishoppers are tempted to react. Offers that are particularly appealing include BOGO, deep discounts on a second item, and free loss leaders — all of which appeal to omnishoppers who are always looking for a good deal.
Increasing Interactive Efforts
The amount of content available has exploded, and with that change comes a renewed focus on video as a differentiating factor. Creating shoppable video is one of the tactics that marketers employ to engage omnishoppers. Shoppable videos allow users to “click-to-buy” items that are featured within the video content via an interactive overlay.
Telling Your Story
Storytelling has always had a powerful place in the world of marketing, but it is being increasingly leveraged by challenger brands as they attempt to pry sales away from their enterprise-scale competitors. Americans want to be able to relate to their brands, and marketers who nail the storytelling aspect of their outreach are the ones who lead omnishoppers to the checkout lane.
Being Authentic and Transparent
Today’s shoppers are savvy to the wiles of modern marketers and are looking for a deep and authentic connection with the brands in which they invest. The latest research is at their fingertips — from whether their favorite brand is produced in a sustainable fashion, to the potential damage that specific ingredients could cause. This is creating a passion for marketers who create a persona for their brands that projects a fully authentic and transparent feel. Individuals can and will fact-check, with up to 65% of Americans digging into the way their food is produced.
What do all of these stats mean for marketers? Seeing where and how shoppers interact with your brand or retail chain is more important than ever. When you have this power at your fingertips, you are able to connect the dots to create a cohesive omnichannel experience that will appear seamless to your audiences.