By Mark Landiak & Michael Janowski
September 1, 2016 - Is your company using Omni-Channel Retailing to provide flexibility for customers to buy from you on multiple platforms? The brick-and-mortar that sustained us in the past may not be enough to sustain us in the future as carriers lower commissions and costs continue to rise. Competitors are migrating towards direct sales, mobile and web-based marketing, and other non-traditional methods for reaching customers. Most consumers are doing on-line research, identifying what they want, what it costs and perhaps even purchasing on line. Thus, retailers must figure out how to create new value and simplify the consumer experience.
One strategy is to become the educator in the markets you serve in-store, on-line and maybe even in the customers place of business. Here are a few ways you could look to apply an omni-channel solution to your wireless store:
- Create a store email newsletter with links to device tutorials, product reviews, coupons, and other useful info that frames you as “the expert” to your customers and makes them want to shop in your store.
- Develop a store app with special deals, a benefits reward system, product reviews, and more information that rewards them with points by visiting your wireless store to see live products.
- Use low-cost social media advertising that positions your wireless products alongside other customers' interests and encourages them to follow and share about you on social media.
- Start a YouTube channel with videos featuring your store employees giving useful educational and tutorial information about your devices, accessories, plans, and special customer values.
- Promote share-for deals where customers who demonstrate a check-in and promote your store receive special values on devices, accessories and more.
- Consider starting relationships with the businesses in your community.
The true value in omni-channel is providing access and flexibility to/from customers to transact in spaces that your competition may neglect, overlook, or under-utilize. An omni-channel approach let's you maintain your position of active seller while simultaneously assuming the position of the most ready to sell when your customers are ready to buy.
For the most part, there isn't a whole lot of nuance anymore in the wireless space. Plans, accessories, devices, insurance; If you have it, then chances are your competition does too (or will shortly). The actual process of differentiating your company is mostly about customer experience on multiple levels. And since anyone can share a positive or negative experience instantly via the web, this means your in-store and on-line experience are more important than ever. Sustaining (and growing) profitability in wireless means going where other wireless retailers haven't thought to go yet. But it’s only a matter of time before they catch the wave. The question is who will get there first.