The modern retail market is nothing like it used to be, even two years ago. When the pandemic started, we were already experiencing a drastic shift towards multi-channel retail, and the pandemic only gave it a nudge. As a result, today we are operating in an environment where online retailers need to sell on more than one platform to create a wide presence.
More than 95% of marketing professionals believe in the power of multi-channel retailing and marketing. However, this doesn’t mean that you need to jump right in and start spending money on activities you don’t understand. Here’s a stepwise guide to understanding multi-channel retailing. Have a look and prepare your marketing strategy the right way.
Multi-channel retailing is a term coined for the use of multiple channels for selling products to customers. When a retail provider is trying to sell services and products through more than one channel, they are using multi-channel marketing, such as social media, phone calls, direct emails, etc. This term also includes marketplaces, like AliExpress, and social media channels, like Pinterest.
There are three major types of multi-channel retailing options. We believe, as a dropshipping business or an online retailer, these are the best options you have. Read more to start exploring.
Social media platforms are amazing for selling new products. Think about it. As customers, we are all now able to purchase products on Instagram and Facebook. The reason why this medium is simpler is that there are sponsored ads to boost traffic, and we already use these platforms multiple times throughout the day.
Now, here you need to realize that the idea behind multi-channel sales through social media doesn’t always include selling through these platforms. This includes brand awareness, driving offline traffic, generating word-of-mouth links, etc. So, sometimes, we are on one platform just to spread awareness of our brand. For example, most people may showcase their services on LinkedIn to help the audience understand what they do. They are not trying to sell anything on the platform, they are just spreading awareness.
Other than social media, another famous multi-channel retailer includes your website. Primarily, almost every retailer wants to create a website to customize the user experience. Having a customized website allows you to create content and experiences that your users want. As a result, you are able to generate more leads via brand advocacy and lead nurturing.
However, you need to create a mobile-friendly website that can be accessed on phones or different screens. This will help you reach a broader market and attract many more customers.
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The idea here is to offer a seamless experience to your users. For this, you need to work hard because most of your multi-channel traffic diverts to your website. If you are selling on social media, then the customer may eventually visit the website to check out the entire range.
Hence, you need to ensure quick page loading speed, a seamless experience, fewer clicks, and an appealing minimalistic website look.
The last option on our list for sales channels is the marketplace, like AliExpress and Amazon. As a dropshipping business, you may not be able to consider this option because you are sourcing products from a marketplace only.
For other businesses, they can consider selling on marketplaces for better outreach. These are centralized online sources that offer a great buying experience. You need to manage your products and fulfilment and the rest is taken care of by the marketplace owner.
In recent times, the popularity of online retail and marketplaces has soared, so it wouldn’t hurt to try this route.
The e-commerce retail world is filled with so many opportunities. Earlier, very few players were selling online, so they owned the market. But now, things have changed, and competition has increased drastically. For this reason, building a multi-channel retail experience can aid your business.
Some benefits of multi-channel retail are:
Better Customer Targeting
Unless you hit a jackpot, every user wants to browse products before making a purchase. They may look at your website, social media, and reviews and ratings to accomplish this.
With a multi-channel retail experience, you are able to create a broad presence online, which makes it simpler for your visitors to explore your brand.
For example, you can attract users from Pinterest with its amazing images. But, that’s not your only option because you can also allow users to check your products on influencer pages on Instagram. This will help them build trust in your brand.
Similarly, your users can directly visit the website and explore reviews by other buyers who have used products from your store.
When compiled, these efforts help you target users in the right manner. You are able to improve your conversions and revenue.
Successfully selling products from your dropshipping store on multi-channel means you are expanding your reach. If, earlier, you were only reaching an audience that shops through websites, you are now able to reach an audience that shops via Instagram or social media.
This helps you improve your overall revenue because your sales streams increase.
More and more sellers are creating an online presence. Especially after the pandemic, the online retail market has drastically increased. Therefore, it seems logical to think that you have strong competition online. If you are selling through a marketplace, many other retailers are too. They may have the same product at different prices. This way, you have a lot of competition.
When you create a multi-channel retail experience, you are able to reduce the impact. This is because you are not just selling through a marketplace, but you are marketing your own website, reaching customers on social media, and overall creating several channels for purchase. Therefore, you are able to uniquely reach out to customers from different sources, which makes them remember you.
When you are selling through one channel, such as a marketplace, you have less control of activities. For example, if you are selling through the AliExpress marketplace, you can’t completely control how you sell, what type of strategy is being used, and other factors. These decisions directly or indirectly affect the brand and growth of your company.
With a multi-channel retail approach, you are able to control your brand’s voice. For example, on social media, you are marketing in a way you like.
This helps you control your business’s future and even mitigates the risk of working with just one platform.
As a dropshipping business, you may be wondering why many of these options are not relevant to you. While that holds true, you can still utilize multi-channel retail.
So, even when you can’t use marketplace selling because that’s where you source your products, you can still use social media. You can create your own website and sell it on social media. These channels also help you create a multi-channel presence.
What is in this retail model for you?
- Dropshipping businesses can improve their outreach by selling on different platforms. You can reach out to a wider audience.
- Since you are able to reach a wider audience, you are also able to generate more revenue, and isn’t this what we all need?
If you are a retail business thinking about the benefits and needs of multi-channel retail, you are at the right place. Go through the above data, explore more about multi-channel retailing, and start using it to grow your business.