7 Steps to Multichannel Mastery
The multichannel database has a much broader responsibility than it had in single-channel selling. Not only must you capture every sales transaction from every channel, but you also need to track and measure all results by promotional effort.
In essence, the database drives customer marketing and a totally integrated buyer communications plan by channel. Our experience is most companies undercommunicate with customers or treat all customers alike.
5. Comprehend and apply metrics and analytics to every phase of the business across all channels. Successful multichannel merchants understand that numbers and analysis drive the business. First, your company should understand the key metrics that impact the business.
Second, apply analytical techniques in managing the business. Each selling channel has numerous key metrics to track and adminster marketing, merchandising and financial aspects of the business. Keep up with industry studies and research on how to apply these metrics.
A 2006 British Royal Mail study on the impact of catalogs and direct mail flyers on Web sales, which was modeled after one done by the USPS, showed catalogs drive Web sales, both in annual purchase frequency (up 76 percent) and amount spent annually (up 72 percent).
6. Seek out and use all aspects of the Internet to greater advantage. Each year the Internet has a bigger impact on the buying habits and patterns of consumers, and 2008 certainly won’t be an exception. Unless you’re selling exclusively to septuagenarians who have little interest in browsing or buying from that “new-fangled Internet,” the Web can be a major driver of store traffic, enhance catalog sales and be a huge selling channel on its own.
Smart multichannel marketers aggressively use tricks like search engine optimization, pay per click, e-mail campaigns and highly navigable Web sites to seek and find new customers, drive Web and retail traffic, and boost overall results from existing customers.