Canadian Retailer - Spring 2014 - 30
MYSTORE RETAILER'S GUIDE VOL. 10.2: OMNICHANNEL
Online channels allow indies to enhance their level of engagement with customers.
"As a retailer, no matter how big or small you are,
you have to understand all the new touchpoints. If
you're creative and willing to look at new opportunities, you can do some really interesting things."
- HARLEY FINKLESTEIN
Tip: Give customers choice
According to Shopify, less than 10 per cent of
total retail sales in Canada are done online. In
the next five years, that's going to change. The
change, however, won't necessarily involve online retailing killing offline retailing.
"That's not the case," says Finkelstein. "The
future of retail is retail. It's everywhere. It's
about consumer choice."
Some consumers will choose to buy online.
Some will choose to webroom and buy instore. Still, others will ask for the option to buy
through a mobile device.
Finkelstein says retail needs to serve the customer. "The consumer will soon dictate the way
they complete a purchase. As a retailer, no matter how big or small you are, you have to understand all the new touchpoints. If you're creative
and willing to look at new opportunities, you
can do some really interesting things."
canadian retailer | spring 2014 | www.retailcouncil.org/cdnretailer
Tips to Build the Business
* Hang on holidays. Build a variety of holiday
sales promotions for your store specifically
meant for the ecommerce platform. Market
the promotions across the channels-in-store
and through social media. Use the holiday
push to help gauge what works with which
groups of customers.
* Steer in-store traffic to online venues. Build
online traffic by steering in-store customers
to the website. Encourage showrooming in
your store and to buy through your webstore
if they prefer making online purchases. Promote the online store at the cash with coupons that are redeemable online.
* Give a reason to go. Build foot traffic in the
store by pushing online sales into the store.
Give customers who browse the Web store
discounts for purchasing in-store.
* Treat online separately from the in-store
experience. It is a myth that online retail
operates the same as offline retail. The fact
is that people shop differently online than
they do inside a store, and retailers who want
to sell online need to treat the online store
as it is-an entirely different business proposition with an entirely different business
model catering to different behaviour.