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The Future of E-Commerce Strategies: Omnichannel vs. Omnicommerce

Discover how omnichannel and omnicommerce strategies interact and what they mean for e-commerce brands now and in the future.

The landscape of e-commerce is changing rapidly. Delivery businesses are now staples of cities across the country and virtually every major social media platform now has a native shopping app. While many brands are still trying to master omnichannel sales and marketing strategies, others are already looking ahead to the future. Omnicommerce is a relatively new concept that is quickly being identified as the future of e-commerce, though the definition of this methodology is still very nebulous. In this guide, we aim to define omnicommerce and what it means for e-commerce brands now and in the future. We’ll also take a look at how omnichannel and omnicommerce strategies interact and recommend which you should adopt for your business.

What Does Omnichannel Mean?

Omnichannel refers to a brand’s presence across a wide range of channels and platforms. Where multichannel refers to brands that have both an online store and physical storefront, omnichannel refers to the modern online shopping experience where customers can buy a brand’s products from an e-commerce store, an app, on social media, on Amazon, and more. 

In the early stages of omnichannel sales, brands found it difficult to manage the communication and experience customers had with their companies. Adopting an omnichannel sales and marketing strategy allows brands to ensure all touchpoints of their brand provide the same experience regardless of channel. Omnichannel strategies allow brands to align their sales and marketing efforts to provide customers the same overall experience across multiple channels, creating a seamless brand impression no matter where customers shop. 

Omnichannel Tools and Examples

There are dozens of ways to manage your brand’s omnichannel communication, sales, and marketing strategies. These are just a few examples of tools that exist that successful brands are using now for omnichannel success.

Hubspot CRM

You might be surprised to see a CRM on this list, but the Hubspot CRM virtually redefines the concept into an omnichannel powerhouse. With Hubspot, you can track communications, manage marketing campaigns, and track sales across all channels. This is one of the most robust omnichannel tools out there, and it’s free up to a certain threshold. Thousands of companies use the Hubspot CRM to successfully manage multiple channels and contact points with their customers.

ActiveCampaign

ActiveCampaign is the perfect tool for marketers of e-commerce brands, intended to support businesses at every customer touch point. With ActiveCampaign, marketers can create and automate marketing emails, design landing pages, grow social media pages, and more. The ActiveCampaign CRM is also a handy tool for tracking leads and contacts effectively.

Shopify Plus

Shopify is arguably one of the most robust e-commerce platforms available. Shopify is incredibly user-friendly and highly customizable, making it easy for even small startup brands to launch a website. Shopify Plus takes it a step further by becoming the perfect omnichannel tool for businesses that have both online and brick-and-mortar storefronts. This tool allows brands to manage products across multiple channels, like social media storefronts or marketplaces, without having to constantly bounce between each platform. Shopify Plus also marries the in-store POS and online cart to create a seamless checkout experience for customers.

What Does Omnicommerce Mean?

In today’s consumer environment, where platforms like Uber Eats and PostMates allow customers to have virtually whatever they want delivered wherever they are,  brands need to adapt to that level of demand. Omnicommerce answers that need by showing customers where and how to buy products in the way most convenient to them–whether that’s through a delivery service, an online retailer, at a store around the corner, or at their favorite restaurant.

It’s important to note that omnicommerce is not the same as “omnichannel commerce,” which is essentially the strategy of giving customers the ability to buy products across a brand’s owned channels. With an omnicommerce platform, customers can make purchases with a retailer without having to leave the brand’s owned platform–which secures their loyalty and greatly increases the likelihood of additional purchases in the future.

Omnicommerce Tools and Examples

Where omnichannel strategies are supported with applications, software, and infrastructure within the platforms themselves, omnicommerce is a relatively new and, therefore, under-resourced strategy. Though many marketing and commerce companies are already developing software and apps to support this growing methodology, few tools exist that can optimize the omnicommerce strategy.

Product locators are some of the closest examples of omnicommerce tools on the market right now. Product locators track the locations in a given area where a customer can buy your brand’s product, keep track of demand, and aggregate data that can help you make informed marketing decisions for your business. Ideally, an omnicommerce tool should do not only that, but also allow customers to buy that product without leaving your app or website. 

Omnichannel vs. Omnicommerce: Which Should You Use?

Omnichannel and omnicommerce are not competing concepts, nor is omnicommerce the “next level” of omnichannel strategy. These concepts can be employed in tandem with one another to provide a comprehensive customer experience for the ever-evolving consumer landscape. In fact, omnicommerce strategies can’t effectively be employed without also utilizing an omnichannel sales and marketing strategy.

Of course, adopting an omnicommerce strategy is easier said than done. As mentioned, omnicommerce is still growing legs in the e-commerce sphere–though SaaS companies are already jumping into action to create tools that can meet this growing need. Right now, brands can begin to adopt an omnicommerce mindset by integrating product locators on their websites, simplifying their checkout processes, and utilizing CRM software. These strategies will not only pave the way for omnicommerce success but will also improve the customer experience as a whole.

Step Into the Future of Omnicommerce

The Grappos Product Locator has proven to be an effective tool for hundreds of brands across a wide variety of industries, enabling businesses to boost sales and optimize their marketing strategies. The Grappos Product Locator helps users find products near them and link directly to online retailers through the widget, greatly increasing the likelihood of a purchase. If you’re looking for a way to offer customers a better experience and increase brand loyalty at the same time, Grappos is the tool for you.

What are you waiting for? The e-commerce landscape is changing rapidly, so don’t get left behind. Request a Grappos Product Locator demo and start preparing for the future of omnicommerce today.

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Eric Kunisawa

Founder & CEO

Eric Kunisawa is the founder of Grappos. He's been successfully helping businesses connect customers with their products since 2008.

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